Hippie out

30 May, 2013

Just a quick note, this time.

I have finished my little speaking-stick. Tongues, once per day, for about an hour, on whomever holds the stick. I had to explain it twice, and they asked me “So, what do you do with it”, to which I replied that I had told them how it worked, and how they organised their meetings to take advantage of its magic was not my problem.

You know, it’s rather answered for me something that used to be a puzzle – where do all those odd little one-off magic items come from? The doors that open themselves, little flying whistles, you name it. The answer is: people like me make them. Obvious in retrospect, really.

Actually … I think I may have screwed up the base price of the item. Calculated it for a 2nd level spell rather than a 3rd level. Oh well.

Rainor had a long talk to the oak in the center of the manastery. Then, speaking-stick in hand, we had a chat to one of those insectoid things. They have a hive mind, and were not really much help. All we really got was that it would be worthwhile talking to the vine that has come through the portal.

So Rainor chatted to her (why her? It’s what she identified herself as, and it’s not for us to judge) and all we really got there was that she was physically plugging the portal to whatshername’s pocket plane and was not inclined to let us through.

We went back home, at a bit of a loss, and then back to the arena for some more dreams. This time, one of us dreamed of an attack on Wyvern Bridge by giant worms. One of them broke through to where we were, and then an alarm came from the castle – Wyvern Bridge was under attack.

We teleported. I could have worked on the spell of Greater Teleport, but instead I have been working on Limited Wish. I still can’t teleport eveyone at once, so we split into team elf and team shiny – I took Rainor and Rainen and what do you know wound up miles away (we need to organise teleport targets for all the cities – a circle with a distinct pattern for each).

But, I managed a second casting and got it right this time. Team shiny were fighting some giant worms. I stayed out of it – flying and invisible, firing scorching rays. A nasty moment when one of us was swallowed whole by one of the things, but we killed it quickly enough for him to cut his way out.

Fun aside, we are really at a bit of a loss. I don’t think I can manage a Plane Shift, and even if I could I’d need a key for the particular demiplane we are looking for. We have collected some items from various creatures from this plane, but blowed if I know what we should do with them.

I’d have to say, at this point, that whatshername is winning. At this rate we will have to abandon the capital and leave it to the fey.

PFS – On Hostile Waters

24 May, 2013

DO NOT READ IF YOU HAVE NOT PLAYED PFS SCENARIO #3-11, The Quest for Perfection, Part II: On Hostile Waters.

Khadem Aleghedh, dispatch 6

So haven’t blogged games 1-5 for this character. Meh. I also didn’t collect enough notes to fill in all the names, but after writing this I’ll have a better idea of what I need to keep track of to do this. Until then, I’ll have to put (?) all over the place to indicate that Khadem would have kept better track of this than I did.

Journal of the Journey to Swallow’s Nest, Khadem Alegdh, Pathfinder level 2

(insert date here)

At the order of Venture Captain Amara (?) we set sail from (?) on (?) down (?) river to Swallows Nest, where we are to meet (?). We transport a scared braid of considerable power, and were also directed to take delivery of a quantity of incense from a local tribe, which would hail us along the way.

Our party numbered (insert party here) and seemed a capable group.

(insert date here)

Today, at an hour after midday, we were attacked from the shore by a small group of tribesmen on horseback, armed with bows. Our group numbers only one decent archer, and we were sitting ducks on the narrow river. Our boat has no fortifications to speak of – not even a gunwhale (just a railing). The tribesmen targeted the tillermen, who at the time were myself and (?). To compound our difficulty, the attack was executed at a particularly difficult stretch of the river, and – the tiller momenterally lacking a firm hand – the boat hitched up on snags and sandbars, throwing us about the deck, (?) falling overboard.

The tribesmen continued to attack as we struggled to regain control of the boat and to rescue our colleague overboard. Our archer engaged their leader, hitting him with several arrows (although I was lucky enough to get the final shot). One more shot downed one og the other tribesmen, at which poit the entire group disengaged and fled.

The rules for what happens if the tiller is unattended were nuts – you’d think that a flat-bottomed riverboat starts bucking like a bronco the moment someone lets go of the tiller. It was like the bridge of the Enterprise. I have to assume that in the module, this particular section of the river was dangerous.

We recovered from the leader of the tribesmen a curious box with a snake insignia, which we have not opened. I rather suspect there’s a snake in it.

Although obvious to more experienced pathfinders, I might note the following:

  • As always, the role of the cleric was crucial. Without him, we would without question have had fatalities, including myself.
  • Ranged capability is indispensible when travelling through open areas and overland. A group of swordsmen can investigate a dungeon, but the cannot safely travel road or river without cover.
  • When you make camp, consider defensibility. This is trained into us, but we did not translate the lesson – did not understand a boat on which we would be travelling for weeks as a “camp”. We were hindered by the need for secrecy, but even (say) a carpet or cloth over the railing would have provided concealment, from which we could have fired at liberty.

(insert date here)

Today we were hailed from shore by the tribesmen from whom we were to pick up the incense. After pleasantries and hospitality, the shaman informed us that there had been a snag. The sky-gods, it seemed, had disapproved of the sale of the incense by putting on a lightning storm the previous day. After considerable diplomatic efforts (mainly on my part, although by no means entirely), we managed to persuade the shame that the cause of the Pathfinder Society was a noble one, and that the delivery of the incense could proceed.

Brother (?)

I am pleased to report that we have made contact with the (?) tribe and spent a pleasant evening being regaled by them by a variety of stories. Please find attached both my and (?) best recollection of the substance of these stories and accounts of various mythic personages, the smoking of the hookah (which despite appearances does not appear to be at all narcotic) ,as well as one or two notes about various faux-pas which agents of freedom should be at pains to avoid when dealing with these men in future.

Yours in Freedom, Democracy, and Violent Extrajudicial Death to all who oppose Freedom and Democracy.

(insert date here)

Today, a customs-house at a chain across the river, manned by (?). I am certain that they are looking for the braid, but we managed to conceal it. After some bowing and scraping and payment of a “tax”, we were permitted to continue.

(insert date here)

Today, while proceeding though a narrow canyon with near-rapids, we were attacked from the cliffs above by a tribe of arboreal goblins. The boat, predictably, became stuck on the walls of the canyon and began to swing sideways, in danger of actually stuck fast across the current. While the rest of the crew engaged in the difficult work of freeing the boat, I kept the goblins occupied with my bow, drawing their fire – which mainly consisted of rotten fruit and excreta. Rather a lot of it, really. And not all that much fruit towards the end

At the kind insistence of my fellow pathfinders I spent several minutes being dragged behind the boat in the river and appear to be none the worse for wear, although the same cannot be said for my outfit.

(insert date here)

Today, we reached lake (?).

(insert date here)

Today, we were politely attacked by a military vessel – a galley. We felt that we had no hope of making any sort of resistance, and so we hove to and were searched. The captain found the box of incense but not the braid. She confiscated the entire ship and its cargo, but we had reached our destination, and managed to retain possession of the incense by insisting that it was a gift.

In retrospect, it occurred to us that the galley was manned by slaves, not by soldiers, and that we could have taken the few soldiers aboard. Although, obviously, loss of the boat is not an ideal outcome, nevertheless everyone understands that this mission is dangerous and the boat could have been lost in any one of a variety of ways on the journey so far. As it stands, we have completed the river journey successfully (with a military escort into port, no less), have not attracted undue attention, and are in an ideal position to continue with the rest of our mission.

I fully anticipate success.

Dungeoneering With Eunice

21 May, 2013

I missed the first two weeks of the campaign and then another week due to illness, so this week was the third week of play for me. I have not blogged the enchanter or yarn world. This week we woke up in a cavern underground, after mushroom spore dreams from last week.

Dear Diary,

Today I woke up underground. Or I’m dreaming that I’m underground – I really don’t know because things have been topsy-turvy since I went through the portal. I’m probably really laying on my bed at home on death’s door with a fever or something, but it feels real here.

So I woke up and there’s Grumdorf and the man with the shovel and all the others who I haven’t really met yet and they told me that I was unconscious from breathing mushroom spores. And we are trying to find the Drow, although I really don’t know why, because I read that drow are elves who are very dangerous and evil and live underground. So there was a passage going back to the surface and a passage going underground and I said well if we are trying to find drow then we should go downwards and everyone was arguing and here was a cave-in so we all had to go down the down passage anyway.

Daniel, Andrew and I think Brendan and a couple of others are dicking around, playing “but what’s my motivation?” So Alix pulls the “rocks fall, everybody dies” trick.

So we go down the passage for a while and its dark but I have my magic torch and other people have torches, too. Then some more rocks fall and we are split into two groups. It’s me and Mr Shovel and an elven archer and [Drewf’s character] and there’s too many rocks to lift so we have to continue on but I tell everyone that if we keep a hand on the right-hand wall then we will find our way back.

Yes, John – I’m aware that that only works for simply-connected planar graphs. Eunice is 14, ok? Maybe younger.

And we come to a room and there’s big goblins in it and there’s a prisoner who is sort of a human dog-person (he’s called a Gnoll) and he’s a prisoner and there’s a fight and then we finish and we release the gnoll and he is very happy and he comes with us. Oh and I found a diamond but if we want to find our way back we will have to ask for help and maybe bargain, so I gave it to the shovel man.

“Shovel-man” – sorry dude, it’s embarrassing but I haven’t gotten everyone’s name down yet. Anyway, he has the best diplomacy. In-game justification is that Eunice doesn’t really have much of an idea of the value of money, and she has a streak of cunning from her low origins.

And we go further on and we follow the wall and there’s a big insect thing and everyone fights it and I push it away.

Umber Hulk, but way nerfed.

And then we come to a big room and there is a pool of water and some frog men. And there is a long fight and we are winning, and then all the frogs go back to a silver tree and start croaking and chanting and the tree catches fire. And I don’t know what the tree will do but its probably bad so I lift some water from the pool onto it and it goes out and the frogs dive into the pool and swim away.

Eunice’s daily is “Telekinetic Lift”. Lift a willing ally or an object of up to 400lbs. That’s about 160l, or 32 american gallons of water. Maddie (the DM) totally didn’t see that coming 🙂 . Neither did the bullywugs. It’s why I picked telekinetic flavour for my psion – it has potential for fun.

And that’s what happened today.