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Author Topic: DCC Campaign Log  (Read 5156 times)

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DCC Campaign Log
« Reply #30 on: November 28, 2015, 12:54:09 AM »
DCC Campaign Update: They Are The Egg Men (Goo Goo Ga-Joob)


When last we'd left our intrepid heroes they had been discovered by the mighty (though mortally wounded) Tiamat, Lord/Lady of Dragons; and by about 30 mutant fanatics, a number of Dragonmen, a troglodyte chieftain and his honor guard and Shaman, and the sorceress of Tiamat. Combat was about to happen.  As it turns out:

-it did ensue. By the end of it, half the PC party, half of the Cosplay Catgirls From Another Universe, 11 out of 12 crusading Dwarves, and Tiamat and most of her army were all dead.

-as it turns out, a breath weapon from a 95%-dead Superdragon is still enough to immolate a sizable chunk of your party.

-as it turns out, Dragonmen hatched by a dying Dragon-Daemon are kind of derpy.

-as it turns out, the troglodyte waving his greatsword around with panache before facing the heroic PC in single combat was NOT the setup for an Indiana Jones down-in-one-shot gag. Instead, it was the PC who went down like a bitch.

-as it turns out, you don't get to be troglodyte chief through good looks or charm.

-as it turns out, Cosplay Catgirls can hold their own in a fight, once they do their super-kawaii transformation sequence and pull out their "Harajuku Gogo Protectora Balls".

-as it turns out, firing a missile launcher at a well-supported cave roof will do nothing to save your cause.

-as it turns out, casting a massive cloudkill will.

-as it turns out, Tiamat really did have a massive shitload of treasure. So massive the party had to have Bill the Elf ask Sezrekan to teleport it out for them.

-as it turns out, Sez was so elated from the death of his rival that he really didn't mind, and sent it out to somewhere called Ice Dome Zero, which is supposed to be abandoned.  The party immediately decided that it should be their new home base.

-as it turns out, there were tons of magic items too.

-as it turns out, the party's other elf, Rick/Rickandra, got the bulk of those items. He also unfortunately got the bulk of the cursed items; including the Plate Mail of Suckitude (which sucks), and the Asshole Ring (which makes you act like an asshole; it also makes you TOTALLY reflect any magic specifically cast at you; which Rick thought was awesome, but only because he hasn't yet figured out the implications of what that will mean for him).

-as it turns out, Rick/rickandra was the second player to get a one-percent-chance of a significantly useful combat spell having a gender changing side effect.

-as it turns out, no one believes him any longer when he says he joined the Azure Order as a scam.  Not after joining the Azure Order (of non-cisgendered wizards), then taking the Lord of All Flesh as his patron, carrying around a bra of gender change, and getting a spell that changes his gender. As the Lord of All Flesh himself said, "that's not accident, that's a pattern of denial".

-as it turns out, the Lord of All Flesh is WAY too happy to get offered the corpse of a dead Dragon-deity. And has a fairly discomforting idea of a 'reward' for service.

-as it turns out, the party still had to go destroy the Egg Beyond before it destroyed the known universe.

-as it turns out, after treking halfway through a massive cave complex, they found out the egg was on an island in a deadly-transuniversal-vine infested lake, and had to treck back to portage some canoes from the mutant cultist village they'd devastated earlier.

-as it turns out, the "Egg Beyond" is the size of a five story building.

-as it turns out, after getting some help in translation from Fun Guy the Fungi (not his real name, but the party calls him that, on account of his being a friendly giant fungus monster), the party finds out that the Cosplay Catgirls From Another Universe (who had come into this universe with the egg) know a secret entrance.

-as it turns out, the first-floor lobby of the Egg Beyond is full of Egg-Men guardians. Goo Goo Ga Joob.

-as it turns out, being able to cast a spell giving you 50 animated armor defenders is only of limited utility when the Egg Men can seemingly multiply indefinitely.

-as it turns out, while a Massive Cloudkill is super-useful against a Daemon Dragon-Lord and its horde of cultists, it's totally useless against Egg Men.

-as it turns out, the doors to the Egg Beyond's internal Sphincter Turbolifts are extremely resistant to dwarven axes.  Not so resistant, however, to monofilament whips.

-as it turns out, the treasure of an Egg from the outer void beyond the universe will be a gem of a color that no one ever saw before.

-as it turns out, the Sphincter Turbolift led the party to where the Egg was imprisoning Marduk, the Crystaline Dragon who may be Tiamat's heir. And Marduk is pissed off. Fortunately, Marduk thinks it was the Egg who killed Tiamat, not the PCs. For now.

-As it turns out, the heart of the Egg Beyond is an Egg Within an Egg. Goo Goo Ga Joob.

-As it turns out, with Marduk's help and figuring out its weak spot, the PCs were able to defeat it.

-As it turns out, defeating the Egg Beyond generates a miniature black hole that will suck everything there out into the Void beyond.

-as it turns out, the PCs manage to Planewalk away, to their new home in Ice Dome Zero, just in time.

As for Marduk, he astrally shifted away just in time too.  And boy is he going to be pissed when the troglodyte chief (who survived the massacre at Tiamat's cave) tells him that the PCs were the ones who killed his mom/dad.  And that Sezrekan sent them, and then killed his brother and any other potential heirs to Tiamat's power. That sounds like the start of an epic Dragon Revenge story.  But that'll be a story for another time; like at the worst possible moment for the PCs.

Next time: Terror at Ice Dome Zero!

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DCC Campaign Log
« Reply #31 on: December 11, 2015, 01:45:41 PM »
DCC Campaign Update: Inhuman Freudian Terror at Ice Dome Zero


In this weekend's adventure the party confronted:

-the realization that even protected by a dome, they were somewhere really fucking cold.

-that the central power sphere of the dome was apparently missing.

-that their cleric was too, after the previous night's patron-induced orgy.

-that "what happens in x, stays in x" has become the motto of the party.

-that there were traces of suspicious slime in the dome.

 -that no slime is ever a good slime.

-that the "totally abandoned" dome might not be as totally abandoned as Sezrekan made it out to be.

-that the outside of the dome might be populated by abominable snowmen, or yetii, or sasquatches. Or some damn thing.

-almost immediately thereafter, that the Sasquatches(Sasquatchii?) are inside the dome!

-that the dwarf Feld, son of Feldstein may have been kidnapped by Yetises. Possibly slimy yetises.

-that for some damn reason, pluralizing tundra-monsters is tough.

-that in spite of being frozen, powerless and an apparently sasquatch-filled deathtrap, Ice Dome Zero is not without its charms. Charms like laser pistols, blaster pistols, laser rifles, blaster rifles, and 24 cobalt limpet mines. Also parkas.

-the sudden epiphany that their mysterious enemies might not be abominable snowmens at all, but just guys in primitive parkas. Albeit slimy parkas.

-that the best plan they have is to seal the door and cast sequester.

-that the above plan may have been for naught, as Feld is back and acting really weird.

-that Feld wants them to come with him to what is clearly some kind of obvious trap.

-that "she" is waiting for them, and really loves them, and just wants to care for them.

-that "she", as it turns out, is in fact a giant slug-creature called the Gorlax, that exudes addictive love-slime out of its spike-nipples.

-that discovering this turn of events in the middle of seeing a bunch of the Gorlax's Cold Mutant love-slaves "feeding" was not the most appetizing way of discovering the truth. But at least it turns out that there were no sasquatches after all.

-that unfortunately, what is there, in the volcanic cave under Ice Dome Zero, is a giant emotionally-needy love-smothering Slug-monster, about 20 Cold Mutants, a dozen little (still giant) slugs, and one recent dwarf convert.

-that fighting the gorlax and her forces from a safe distance doesn't protect you, when the narcotic effect of her freshly exuded panic-slime is transmissible by scent.

-that once you've suckled love-slime from one of the gorlax's spike-nipples, you start to question whether there isn't good slime after all.

-that when everyone else in the party is suddenly experiencing a weird codependent girlfriend/mother Freudian love thing with a giant slug, its time for Bill the Elf to run like hell, and consider blowing the entire dome to shit just to save his own ass.

-that in the middle of all these Freudian connotations, casting charm person on a dwarf under the Gorlax's slime-induced "in a relationship"-status only generate an even worse child-of-divorce type emotionally-paralyzing conflict.

-that when you're trying to avoid being affected by airborne slime pheromones, you're willing to go to desperate measures, including taping a plastic bag full of water over your head.

-that air-filter masks from the Dome's lab is probably an easier solution.

-that the Gorlax really isn't evil. She just wants to love all men, and for all men to love her in a dependent and emotionally-supportive way and to listen to her interesting conversation.

-that actually, she also does have a plan to reproduce hundreds more little gorlaxes and take over the world. But she's doing it because of the love!

-that any possibility of finding an easy way out of this (potentially involving lava) evaporates when it becomes clear that the reason why this particular giant slug monster is so large and so powerful is that at some point she ate the Dome's Powersphere.

-that when all other options fail, the only solution left is apparently to create a distraction to get some of the Gorlax's slime-tripping boyfriends out of the way and shoot the living fuck out of her.

-that in the end the Gorlax's death only leaves anyone who's tasted her sweet sweet slime-milk feeling despondent and depressed in the knowledge that never again will they feel a love as pure and tender as when they were suckling on the spike-nipple of a giant slug monster.

-that after everything seems resolved an the powersphere is recovered, there's still a dozen little slug-monsters crawling around the dome to deal with.

-that to top it all off, even with the powersphere the dome's systems don't actually work.

-that when nothing else could go wrong, Feld son of Feldstein comes back with a hundred Cold Mutant warriors at his back.

-that the Cold Mutants had always known Ice Dome Zero as the "Forbidden Place", and dreaded the monsters that would come to steal some of their men from the tribe; but when Feld actually explained to them that the Gorlax would give them warmth and food, suddenly it was paradise to them.

-that the discovery that the elves, who had kept them out in the cold even before the monsters, have now killed the creature that could have been feeding and warming them all this time, is enough to drive the Cold Mutants into a murderous elf-killing rage.

-that promising the Cold Mutants freedom only generates the response "They want to give us freedom! Kill them!!"

-that everything gets smoothed over by a Very Dwarvish Coup, when Qomos the dwarf and Feld the dwarf conspire to have the Cold Mutants move into the Dome with them, and to even spare the elves as long as the elves will now be the Dome's slaves.

-that apparently, Bill the Elf is not pleased with his dreams of finally having an elven Dome as his own personal Fortress of Solitude is dashed when he's going to be a 'slave' (even if just a pretend one to placate the Cold Mutants) and instead Qomos the Dwarf gets to be the dome's "Decider".

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DCC Campaign Log
« Reply #32 on: December 26, 2015, 04:01:03 PM »
DCC Campaign Archive: "Kill it with Fire!"


In today's adventure the PCs learned that:

-You can't really take a year off if your Ice Dome has no power.

-Even once the power is back on, you can't really take a year off if the dome has no food.

-Elven Domes have a very sophisticated food-maker technology that, in essence, means Elves spend most of their lives eating their own shit.

-Apparently, that's ok because Elves poop rainbows... at least, according to the party's resident elves.

-You can use "Mending" to fix a processor unit, but you can't use it to just manifest the vital radioactive isotope that makes the unit process.

-Ultimately, you just can't take a year off.

-When trying to find a rare radioactive isotope, the first place the party can think of checking is the Tower of the Azure Order.

-As usual, whenever you visit the Azure Order, there's a crisis of epic proportions going on and they want to send you on a suicide quest.

-In this case, this quest involves assisting a succubus and a band of dwarves to rescue an azure wizard from the Dark Ones, whose 'brain eater' servants have kidnapped and taken to one of the outer modules of the (fallen) ancient Dwarven Machineholds. The urgency is because when the sky-rocks are aligned, the sacrifice of this particular young wizard will allow the Dark Ones to at long last extinguish the Last Sun.

-Dwarves come in packs of 12.  This particular band is led by Prince Snort, Son of Schwartz, who (like all dwarf bands ever) have as their goal to reclaim their lost homeland.

-The Azure Order does not usually team-up with a blonde bombshell Succubus named "Hot Gams", but stopping the Last Sun from being put out makes for strange bedfellows.

-Hot Gams will give you the time of your life, unfortunately it will also be the last time of your life; or as the tribal mutants like to put it, "Death by Snoo-Snoo".

-You have to go through all kinds of bullshit just to get to the Dwarven Machinehold.

-For starters, you have to go to a place called the Forest of Worms, which is not named after some german village. No, as expected, it's called that because it's a forest full of giant worms.

-When you get past the worm caves, then you have to go through the cave of webs.

-You'd expect the cave of webs to be filled with giant spiders, but it isn't.  Unfortunately, that's because it's only full of one Really Giant Spider that ate all the other spiders.

-The Dwarven response to a giant giant spider is "kill it with fire!"

-When choosing whether to go down through the "Cave of Plague Beasts" or near the "City of the Pale Elves", the latter sounds more palatable.

-Apparently, the pale elves are a race of evil Chaos-worshiping underground elves with incredibly pale skin and a seriously misogynistic culture.

-Pale elves use dart guns with a toxic ooze even medi-bots can't heal.

-The Dwarven response to pale elf guards is "kill them with fire!"

-Pale elves can end up being a problem that solves itself, if a pale elf wizard summons a terrible giant ice frog and then dies the very next round, leaving the frog to run amok amongst the remaining elves.

-When faced with a poison ooze a medibot can't heal, it's time to call on the Lord of All Flesh.

-If you have a dying team-mate, the Lord of All Flesh will lie to you about what you need to do to draw out the poison for comedic/erotic effect.

-People with a lot of secrets should probably be careful to know that Succubi read minds.  They should be particularly careful if they had specifically put on Bras of Femininity for no other reason than to avoid being seduced and killed by a succubus.

-if there's one thing a succubus can't stand, it's female impersonators who act like bimbos.

-The Dwarven Machinehold is a sophisticated labyrinthine complex of rooms, corridors and great halls; none of which the ancient Dwarves ever bothered to make a map about, because they all knew where everything was anyways and would almost never get visitors.

-There are two things you need to know about brain-eaters: the first is that they eat brains. The second is that the Dwarven response to them is "Kill it with fire!"

-In fact, the Dwarven response to just about any kind of hostile entity, small or large, is to loudly declare that said entity must be killed, ideally with fire.

-You actually also need to know one more thing about brain-eaters: they have a massive psychic blast attack that will routinely kill half the party every time it's used.

-The absurdity of there being any chance of a group of 12 dwarves managing to take back a lost Dwarven homeland after ten millennia of occupation by lovecraftian monstrosities only becomes slightly more absurd when there are but 6 Dwarves left.

-If by scrying and divination, the team's succubus finds out that the Dark Ones are to the South and East of here, everyone agrees the best plan of action is to go West, and North.

-A second encounter with a brain-eater will still kill half your party, even if you only had half a party left.

-one way to avoid potential blackmail scenarios from Psychic Succubi is if said succubi get their brain eaten in legitimate combat for the purpose of World-saving and Dwarven Repatriation.

-At this point even Prince Snort's two remaining dwarven subjects think it seems pretty unlikely that they'll be able to liberate a vast dwarf-hold from the Brain Eaters and Dark Ones who presently infest it.

-That doesn't stop his determination to do it, or die trying. Almost certainly the latter.

-The Brain Eaters apparently have no need of the old and spartan dwarf living-quarters, so they've allowed it to be overrun by Insect Men.

-Insect men are, fortunately, a lot easier to kill than Brain Eaters, so the party decides that this is a good place to hold up, with only 6 out of 16 members left alive.

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DCC Campaign Log
« Reply #33 on: January 13, 2016, 08:33:19 PM »
DCC Campaign Archive: You Can Cast Anything You Want At the Darkness, But You Can't Cast That


In this week's adventure, our stalwart heroes (who were deep within the lost Dwarven Machinehold, surrounded by Brain Eaters) learned:

-That an elven prisoner, driven mad through the death of their patron, will begin to act more irrationally than even normal elves do.

-That said prisoner's tooth-on-a-stick is not a magic wand, its just one of their own teeth, on a stick.

-That they are now one car-tire-shoulder-pad away from being characters in a Mad Max movie.

-That you cannot, in fact, cast Magic Missile at the darkness.

-That you can, in fact, fire blasters at the darkness.

-That you can also cast Choking Cloud at the darkness, throw a grenade at the darkness, toss an axe at the darkness, throw a Tooth-on-a-Stick at the darkness, and even cast darkness at the darkness.  You can even curse the darkness. You just can't cast magic missile at it.

-That Brain Eaters are non-copyrighted tentacle-headed monsters from the void that eat your brains.

-That a pit trap becomes pretty irrelevant when you find out that Brain Eaters can also levitate.

-That Brain Eaters are pretty godawful at Interior Design.

-That when a Cold Mutant taps your shoulder and says "excuse me, meeester", it probably means another Cold Mutant is about to hit you on the head with a club in a coup attempt.

-That a band of Dwarven warriors on a quest to retake their homeland will never give up, even when there's only one dwarf left, and said homeland is infested with possibly hundreds of Brain-Eaters.

-That brain eaters are telepaths, but also communicate through tentacle-waving zoidberg-like "BLUBBLUBLUB" noises.



-That trying to use Ventriloquism to simulate said "BLUBLUB" noise will have little effect, even if you try to do it in what you imagine would be a 'seductive' tone.

-That switching to beatboxing blublub noises will be even less effective.

-That the Lord of All Flesh is totally on board with invoking his power to result in Brain-Eater tentacle porn.

-That, disturbingly, servants of the Lord of All Flesh eventually figure out how to weaponize their Patron's orgiastic excesses; and more disturbingly, nick-name it "Sexy Time".

-That once you've rescued the Azure Order novice that was to be sacrificed at the sky-rock alignment to put out the sun, it's time to get the hell out of tentacle-town for the sake of saving the world.

-That if the last remaining Dwarven Prince is determined to stay behind and fight to retake his homeland, you might as well spellburn-drain him to death and take all his stuff.

-That Sezrekan approves of Dwarven Regicide

-That Sezrekan wouldn't really go so far as to call the Azure Order "dicks"; dangerously naive, hopelessly optimistic and annoyingly altruistic, sure, but not dicks.

-That when he has absolutely no choice, Bill the Elf will reluctantly do the right thing.  The "right thing", in his mind, being not killing the innocent Azure Order novice and not teleporting away while abandoning all his team-mates to a grizzly tentacle-filled demise.

-That you might save the entire universe twice, and that still won't get you a seat on the Azure Order High Council. It's enough to make certain wizards turn to the dark side, if they hadn't technically already done so long ago.

-That the Azure Order believes in co-operative co-teaching in their instructional seminars.

-That the downside of casting "Patron Bond" at the figurative darkness is that you might just end up with the (extremely senile) King of Elfland as your Patron.

-That one thing you should never try to do is be an "indian giver" with Sezrekan.

-That referring to the Lord of All Flesh as "Fun" during an Azure Order seminar is highly likely to earn you looks of extreme suspicion from the High Council, and not likely at all to help your chances of eventual political advancement in said order.

-That getting funny looks from everyone in the order might mark a good time to consider getting some distance from the order, especially when you've started to grow extra mouths in all the wrong places.

-That for some reason, Bill the Elf believes Planar Step works best when cast from one bathroom, to another bathroom.

-That when you show up in Ice Dome Zero, and there's a mob of angry Cold Mutants waiting for you, there's at least one guy in the crowd that will shout "Kill them!!" in answer to absolutely anything you say.

-That it's really really hard to tell with Cold Mutants, whether they're saying that the dwarf Feld has died, or is only visiting a series of local regional landmarks that all sound like colorful indigenous euphemisms for dying.

-That promising to restore lights, heating, and food to Ice Dome Zero can eventually win over the new "Decider" and earn an uneasy truce with the Cold Mutants... though there'll still always be that one asshole who keeps shouting "Kill Them!".

-That the Cold Mutants have no need of this Elven drink they call 'mocha cappuchinos', because they drink the congealed blood of the land-whale.

-That actually, upon tasting this Elven drink, they realize that the congealed blood of the land-whale tastes like absolute shit.

-That apparently, Feld son of Feldstein has not died in some flowery euphemistic way, and has in fact managed to run off somewhere with all of Tiamat's Treasure Horde, after somehow blowing a hole in a magical barrier that should have been impossible to open.

-That revenge and the recovery of this vast treasure can wait, while the PCs first recover from their recent ordeals, and while Bill The Elf uses a combination of high thaumaturgy and narcotics to create his new wizard staff, called "the Primo Staff".

-That to his great pleasure, the staff manages to have the special effect he desired: that of causing extreme psychedelic disorientation to anyone it comes in contact with.

-That to his infinite regret, these effects diminish on an individual over time the more frequently they come in contact with the staff, as they build up a tolerance. Because Bill the Elf mainly wanted to use his staff on himself, a lot.

RPGPundit

(January 10, 2015)
LION & DRAGON: Medieval-Authentic OSR Roleplaying is available now! You only THINK you've played 'medieval fantasy' until you play L&D.


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The most famous uruguayan gaming blog on the planet!

NEW!
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Also, now with the CULTS OF CHAOS cult-generation sourcebook

ARROWS OF INDRA
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DCC Campaign Log
« Reply #34 on: January 26, 2016, 02:51:39 AM »
DCC Campaign Update: "I Love you, Dr.Theobald!"


In today's adventure, the PCs were surprised to find:

-That they'd figured out a new method to get rid of Cold Mutant "Deciders": get them high with a magic staff and then have their own people throw them off a balcony.

-That the Cold Mutants don't care much for visions; the old shaman used to get those, and they threw him off something for it.

-That the universal tactic for kidnapping someone (throughout the various planes, even) is to tap someone on the shoulders and say "excuse me mister" while a partner sucker-punches them from behind.

-That their party's cleric can be completely missing for well over 24 hours without anyone even noticing.

-That for Ricandra, to only steal the nominal sum of 10ep from your party-mates room while investigating their possible kidnapping is "being nice".

-That it doesn't matter how much you turn up the heat in Ice Dome Zero, Cold Mutants are always cold; it's just a racial trait.

-That the Plane of Jade is ruled over by the extremely old Jade Empress, who has been kidnapping the handsomest humanoids in all the material plane, to have them participate in 'the games' to see which will be her consort for life.

-That she means their life, not hers, since Material Plane humanoids are absurdly short-lived compared to Jade People.

-That by "games" she means a series of duels to the death, using what they call "Thunderdome Rules".

-That Jade People don't know much about the biology of carbon-based humanoids from the material plane, and didn't actually know the difference between humans and elves.

-That if you're a cleric in this party and you've been kidnapped, you hold no hope or expectation that your team-mates will bother to rescue you; so plan B for you is to convince the Jade People to kidnap your whole party too.

-That Rick/Ricandra, even in male form, registers as 'female' to Jade People sensors.

-That when in doubt on these matters, the Jade People use something called "the Probe" to make sure.

-That "the Probe" is not nearly as ominous or uncomfortable as it sounds.

-That when you need to understand a bit more of the context of Jade Person society, you need to get the help of a Historiologist, and a Carbonologist as well.

-That you can tell who the Historiologist is because of his ridiculous hat.

-That the Jade Court is getting quite desperate, as the Empress is pretty venerable at this point, and still hasn't been able to produce a single heir from any of her material-realm consorts.

-That the basic "birds and bees" of just how Jade people reproduce (it involves chips/shavings off their bodies) doesn't in any way sound like something any humanoid has any business, or indeed even capability, of being involved in.

-That in fact, it's biologically impossible for Jade People and humanoids from a completely different plane to reproduce together; but no one in the Plane of Jade had realized this until just now.

-That Chok the Cold Mutant, who got kidnapped by accident with the PCs, thinks that the Jade Empress' interest in humans who live one-millionth her lifespan and don't seem compatible with her reproductive needs sounds a little bit like what a guy in his tribe named "Orkuk the Penguin-Lover" gets up to.

-That actually, someone HAD apparently realized this before now, and is quite willing to murder Jade People scientists in order to keep the secret.

-That the whole thing may be a set-up from within; and the Jade Empress has been in it all along because as soon as she produces a male heir she won't be in power anymore.

-That the Games Co-ordinator has started to figure out what the Scientist died for, and after getting the whole story from Ricandra and realizing that he's been forced to run over a million 'games' in his career instead of just one, he's come to the conclusion that the Empress is a complete bitch.

-That, even when presented with a viable escape plan to get the fuck out of there and be done with it, the party decides to stay, because they haven't really done their job if they don't utterly ruin every place they visit.

-That Bill the Elf in particular won't be satisfied if he doesn't leave the Plane of Jade in utter politico-social chaos and possible civil war.

-That things get complicated when the Games Co-ordinator has mysteriously disappeared.  Now the Historiologist has to be the new Co-ordinator, because that's the "natural line of succession".

-That no one in any of the various cultures of the Last Sun seem to have any rational way of organizing anything.

-That the old Co-ordinator may have been murdered by the Empress' Chief Intelligencer, Lord Wallhead.

-That Wallhead's agent (named "Stone; Jade Stone") has a few questions for the PCs.

-That while Stone learns very little from them, the PCs are able to deduct from Stone's questioning that in fact the Co-ordinator is not dead.  Unfortunately, he does seem to have used the Jade Empire's great planar gate to flee into hiding in fear of his life, and won't be of any help in getting Bill his violent revolution.

-That while Jade People don't need to eat organic matter, they realize that their humanoid captives do, so they provide them with decorative crystal baskets of colorful fruit.

-That since Jade People also don't have any need for toilets, the decorative crystal baskets, once bereft of fruit, serve a dual-purpose.

-That while the rest of the PCs will now have to fight to the death in "the games", Ricandra may be of some help in any future plans as she has had her request granted to remain on the Plane of Jade as a spectator of the games, and been invited to spend the games in the "Empress' Box".

-That "the Empress' Box" is not a reference to her special area in the Thunderdome, but to a literal small locked box next to the Empress' viewing throne.

-That the first day of the games would consist of 16 gladiatorial fights among 32 contestants, and the next day would be the 'round of 16'.

-That among the other prisoners present for this round of the games are: a savage looking Apeman, some kind of Insect-man, a human peasant with a bucket and a frog, a tough looking ranger, a floating wizard with enough corruption and patron-taint on him to make it obvious he's really powerful, a non-floating wizard who is clearly of lower level, a sneaky rogue that may be from Arkhome, an Emo Elf, an Ogre named Trog who seems to be the only person that actually willingly wants to participate, a hapless cleric named Marvin, and a bunch of guys who look like 1st level cannon fodder.

-That the savage-looking Apeman is actually named "Doctor Theobald", and is an erudite scholar with an upper-crust English accent and a pipe.  The peasant with the Bucket for a helmet, on the other hand, is named Jethro Bucket, and he really is a moron.

-That there's also a last-minute replacement for Ricandra who is a barbarian warrior-babe in bikini chainmail named Sandy, that is 100% biologically female; pretty much proving that the jig is up and everyone in power knows the games are a scam.

-That after a lot of arguing (getting 32 adventurers to agree on anything is pretty hard) the plan becomes to make it seem that the Empress reveals her deception to her people, and then kill her (making it look like a suicide if possible by magically pushing her off the balcony, but if not just magic-missiling her to death), in the hopes of causing an immediate succession war and high-tailing it out of the dimension with as much loot as they can steal, before anyone notices.

-That in order to stop Trog the Ogre from spilling the beans, you just have trick him into eating Jethro's hallucinogenic frog.

-That if you're stuck in the Empress' Box waiting for the Empress to arrive and the games to start, it's probably not a good idea to hint at your plan to kill the Empress to some random noble who sat down next to your box.

-That its a particularly bad idea if that random noble turns out to be Lord Wallhead, the Empress' Royal Intelligencer.

-That since Ricandra is a threat to the Empress, and the Empress' box cannot be opened except by her command, the only solution for Wallhead is to take the whole box with Ricandra in it to his offices.

-That when you're left alone inside a locked jade box in the headquarters of the Secret Police, it's convenient that you have a constant magic-missile floating around your head to gradually carve your way out of the box.

-That the whole elaborate plan to kill the Empress at the start of "the games" is only any good until your keen elven eyes realize that's not the Empress up on the balcony but her body-double.

-That a cleric can save the day by using Word of Command to force everyone in the Empress' Balcony to "Confess".

-That everyone in the Royal Balcony had some dark secret to tell, except that one guard who's really fucking boring (though he confesses he secretly wishes he could have something interesting to confess).

-That the Empress' Body-double speaks in an Australian accent, for no good reason.

-That Wallhead's assistant confirms that in fact the Royal council had known about her plan all along, and the Empress just doesn't give a shit what happens to the Jade Empire after she finally croaks childless.

-That at least one distant member of the royal family was already planning to assassinate the Empress and try to take power.

-That the accumulated weight of all these secrets causes a general panic among the crowd.

-That the Jade Guard are rendered less effective without anyone to give them immediate orders, once the ranger fires a grenade-arrow into the Royal Balcony, causing all the people ostensibly in charge to flee for their lives.

-That Jade Guardsmen are really tough. Like, survive a grenade-arrow tough.

-That if you get out of the Empress' Box and leave behind a pair of Cobalt Mines as a trap for Lord Wallhead when he returns, it would have been better to make damn sure you were going to be farther away than the front lawn when the mines get triggered. And ideally, you'd have been wise to make sure it was Wallhead who triggered them, and not Agent Jade Stone, of her Majesty's Secret Jade Service, who already desperately wants to use his License to Kill on you.

-That with enough team-work, getting out of the Thunderdome arena would probably be a real possibility; so of course the 32 adventurers almost immediately split into various groups with completely different plans.  About 18 of them die almost immediately, too.

-That Dr. Theobald is a cool ape under pressure, and a good ape to have when you're trying to find the way out of Thunderdome, and over to the Planar Gate to destroy it (not so much so that the Jade Empress can't keep kidnapping humanoids from the material plane to use in her death matches, but so that the Jade Empress can't get any ideas of sending revenge squads after you personally; never let it be said this PC party did anything for purely selfless reasons).

-That when you're about to be brutally murdered by a 100% Jade version of 007, if you're a member of this PC party, you will gladly sell out your team-mate's plan to save your own hide.

-That with just about every Royal Guardsman busy protecting the royal palace from complete chaos, the Jade Empire Institute of Jade Sciences is practically undefended. Except by Jade Empire Science-Nerds.

-That even a Jade Nerd-fight can be pretty dangerous, given that Jade Nerd Fists do a D8+1 damage and the average Jade Nerd has 7 times more hit points than the average human.

-That if you're the Jade Nerd scientist who invented the Planar Gate (and probably the only one who could rebuild it), it's probably a bad idea to say so in an angry nerd-tone to the guys who just came in to destroy the gate forever.

-That things only get worse when Secret Agent Jade Stone busts down the door ready to shoot at anything in his path, using Rick/Ricandra as a human (or rather elven) shield.

-That Sandy the Bikini Chain Mail Barbarian can fortunately kick Agent Jade Stone's jade ass; particularly with a bit of help from Jethro Bucket (who has turned out to be a surprisingly efficient 0-level redneck).

-That when the Planar Gate is destroyed, the Jade Secret Agent is dead, and an entire plane is plunged into social ruin, it's time to planewalk it out of there back to Ice Dome Zero.  And to take the survivors of "the games" with you (which happen to be Dr. Theobald, Sandy the Bikini Chainmail Warrior Woman, Jethro Bucket, Jal-udin the backstabbing rogue, and Marvin the Cleric).

That was it for this session; good fun was (as always) had by all.  Now, the PCs plan to recover, try to talk Dr. Theobald to stay on (he's rapidly become their favorite ape-man scientist; but he plans to return to the Southern Ape Kingdoms as quickly as possible), and finally get down to the business of tracking down Feld (son of Feldstein) the dwarf and the stolen treasure hoard of Tiamat.

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Addendum: A note on DCC Elves
Someone asked me if "elven barista" came out of a misreading (an intentional one, in this case, similar to accidental misreadings that has been made before) of the Elven Barrister profession?

Well, sort of: before the campaign even started, I read that and thought "barista" and then came up with the idea that in my DCC world all the elves are useless Hipsters, essentially the "Trust fund babies" of the Last Sun, living in the (illusory) security of their Dome (cities) where their every need is cared for by machines and they are free to argue about fashion, drink increasingly complex beverages and pretend they're writing a novel.   The whole thing being a long slow decadence, since the Ancients vanished, and G.O.D. went mad, and the Dwarves were driven out of their Machineholds by the Dark Ones, so there's nothing to keep the systems the Elves depend on going.  Most of the domes already failed; the remaining Hipster Elves in the remaining domes happily whittle away their lives on trivialities not realizing that the machines they depend on will sooner or later screw up and then they'll all be dead because of how useless they are (or almost always, there's in each generation a handful of useful elves, among which we hope are the PCs).

Later on in the campaign it was revealed that there are more than just one type of Elves: There were, beside the Hipster Elves, also the Smug Elves and the Emo Elves, both of which also live in domes. There was also, apparently some great kickass empire of warrior elves known as the Pythian Knights, who totally destroyed themselves (it would seem) several thousand years back. They had fleets of sky-ships and apparently lived up on the flying rocks that orbit the sun.   It's not yet clear what relation, if any, these elves had to the Dome Elves.

(January 24, 2015)
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« Reply #35 on: January 26, 2016, 02:52:36 AM »
I'll note that in addition to the elves mentioned above, the campaign has since encountered Posh Elves, who are the upper-crust descendants of the once-great sky-empire of the Pythian Knights.
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« Reply #36 on: February 05, 2016, 06:27:44 PM »
DCC Campaign Update: "Some Sorta Apocalypse Now Scenario"


In today's adventure (slightly shorter than usual due to character creation and a long dinner), the bold adventurers found:

-that Bill the Elf has a long term plan to commit extremely slow genocide on the Cold Mutants by having them execute their own "Decider" over and over again.

-that it seems kind of silly to do an Invoke Patron to try to get Sezrekan to grant you some kind of magical item of 'comprehend languages' when you're sitting on a pile of high-tech elven Universal Translators.

-that all Elven technology makes the same 'boop beep' noises when they're in use; while Dwarven tech makes more of a 'bzz bzz' noise.

-that the "old wise woman" is pretty much the same character in every tribal society they encounter.

-that G.O.D. had, for the first time in maybe ten thousand years, something to say other than "There's an Emergency going on!" or "It's still going on!".

-that unbelievable as it might seem, Marvin the Cleric (who isn't even very high level) is The Chosen One.

-that what he has apparently been charged to do by G.O.D. is to plug in the Sacred USB Cable, after bringing it to the Church of St. Ignatius of File Not Found.

-that it would appear that this is an attempt by G.O.D. to "reload from an earlier version", which would be bad news for any of the Daemons.  So naturally, half the party is secretly working against this sacred mission that could heal the world.

-that no one is quite sure just where the Sacred USB Cable is; but it was last in possession of Archdeacon Hill, a high-level cleric that, according to G.O.D., has become too perverse to fulfill his function as the original Chosen One.

-that incredibly, the yokel Jethro Bucket does in fact know where to find Archdeacon Hill: at a place originally known as the Cave of Tranquility, where his tribe (the Bucket Tribe) live.

-that apparently, Hill's "perversion" is that "he's done set himself up in some sorta Apocalypse Now scenario where we all worship him and give him our most attractive cousins".

-That the Bucket Clan are not named because they wear wooden buckets on their head (only Jethro does that); but rather because the entire Tribe is one large massively inbred family. Bucket is just their last name.

-That the Lord of All Flesh is seriously worried about G.O.D.'s plan, but can't really think of any solution other than to give his agent claws for hands.  Among the daemons, Sezrekan was always the more tactical thinker of the bunch.

-that in spite of humanity's 'endangered species' status, the Buckets have thus far survived because of three simple policies: 1) kill all intruders to their territories, 2) worship Archdeacon Hill and his Old Time Religion, 3) marry their own cousins.

-That Jethro Bucket is ultimately OK with betraying and slaughtering his entire nation/extended-family so long as he gets to keep his attractive cousin, Cindy Lou Bucket.

-That Archdeacon Hill might have been hot stuff once, but one massive Magic Missile later and all that's left of him are his designer boots.

-That the Buckets are pretty ferocious fighters, but most are also too damn stupid to simply walk out of a choking cloud.

-that when Bill the Elf makes the tactical choice to blow up Cindy Lou Bucket, he finds himself obliged immediately afterward to kill Jethro too.

-That, the Bucket tribe mostly wiped out and the Archdeacon just a pair of smoking boots, the PCs are now free to recover the Sacred USB Cable, as well as the huge piles of gold and jewels that the Archdeacon had been hoarding from the yokels for the last several decades.

-That the PCs must now, to get to the Church of St.Ignatius of File Not Found, cross through the area which was once known as the 'peaceful plains', but which they learn is now referred to as the Pampas of Destruction.  They have been warned it is full of dangers, but none so terrible (according to local lore) as a vicious sloth with an automatic weapon of some kind.

-That, however, their first run-in is not with the rumoured sloth but with a horde of 70+ Zombie Gauchos (on Zombie Horses and all).  It was commented that they're like the Argentine version of the "white walkers".

-that Marvin the Cleric is in no way reassured by the notion that, since he is the "Chosen One", it will mean G.O.D. will protect him, since all known evidence points to the contrary.

-that even a horde of that size can be taken down, through careful use of Divine Wrath combined with a clever application of the sequester spell, and a bit of good old fashioned ultra-violence to kill off the stragglers.

-that as they approach the ruins of the ancient Port of GoodWind, the gentle and sweet stream which has nurtured them thus far turns into hideous polluted mess, and the pampas into a grotesque swamp.

-that while most of the PCs are distracted trying to view the ruins of GoodWind from a distance, they are almost taken by surprise by a pair of savage River Trolls, identifiable by their rubbery skin, hideous stench, and red-and-white t-shirts.

-that 75 Zombie Gauchos are no trouble, but two River Trolls can damn near slaughter a party of experienced PCs. They have a lot more experience with hooliganism, after all.

-that while he's pretty well useless in combat, Dr. Theobald the Apeman is a valuable guy to have around during a River Troll attack; because he knows the River Trolls' regenerative power can be stopped with fire, and his quick experimentation reveals that the polluted river is in fact so polluted as to be highly flammable.

-that with most of the PCs severely injured by the time the River Trolls are slain, and a couple of the new 0-level guys ready to level up, the party decides to stop before reaching Port GoodWind, to continue on their quest next time.


(February 5, 2015)
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« Reply #37 on: February 18, 2016, 08:59:40 PM »
DCC Campaign Update: "Kill Bill (the Elf)!", or "Treason, Betrayal, and Latinamerican In-Jokes"


In this week's regrettable adventure of double-crosses and betrayals, the PCs:

-Continued to express serious doubts as to whether there was any truth to the idea that just because Marvin the Cleric was "the chosen one" it would in any way mean that he'd get any special protections from G.O.D.

-discovered that at least one chaos cult had ended up kidnapping the wrong cleric, making mistaken assumptions about who the "chosen one" was.

-had the clerics wondering exactly what universe some of the other player characters lived in, where they could assume that G.O.D. was even marginally competent at anything.

-got suckered by a pit trap/ambush by the "Mouth Clan" of berserker hooligans (ultraviolent barbarians notable for their blue and yellow shirts) in the downtown areas of the ruins of Port Goodwind.

-witnessed the unlikely scenario of Bill the Elf getting three corruptions in a single round of combat!

-noted that when accused of being an idiot, Bill the Elf's response was "didn't you know that already?"

-are only saved from the Mouth Clan ambush by the astounding fighting skills of Sandi the Bikini-Chainmail Barbarian, some very strategic use of the Sequester spell, by Dr.Theobald leading several enraged Mouth hooligans into a trap by impersonating a Bolivian, and by the shocking discovery that Jaluddin the Rogue was in fact with the party all along, but is just really good at Not Being Seen.

-decide that the Mouth Clan hooligans having been momentarily dealt with, but the party being extremely wounded, they decide that the best option would be to hide out for the night in the ruins of a fin-de-siecle Cafe.

-discovered that was not a great idea, and that the 'cafe tortono' is really not what it used to be, as the reason there was no sign of Mouth Clan Hooligans around was because of the giant Cafe Ooze that was using the ruins as its lair.  The place still has tourist value, but there's no longer any good coffee to be found there, and the cost of going in is too great.

-choose to run for it, figuring that they're far too wounded to be able to take down a Cafe Ooze.

-discover a series of graffiti wall-scrawlings that appear to explain this bizarre place, with the blood-stained palace and the broken obelisk with a Mouth drawn on it, and the overabundance of fake tango bars: apparently it was once a moderately nice civilization, until the locals began to deify a mad general and his dilettante wife, leading to a mythos-worthy orgy of political, economic, and social self-destruction until nothing was left but a pile of rubble inhabited by delusional madmen still trying to pretend they are a great nation.

-curiously end up finding refuge in a semi-ruined church.

-find said church occupied by the decidedly fake cleric-shyster Reverendo Oswaldo Hijo de Puta (or as his congregants call him, "el reverendo hijo de puta"), and his congregation of mostly gullible old women.

-accept the opportunity to stay overnight at the church for a 'donation', but unsurprisingly aren't interested in purchasing the good Reverend's holy anointing oil, sin-cleansing soaps, or miracle shrouds.  Even in spite of him offering a very favorable exchange rate for the Goodwind Peso from the "gold piece blue" rate.

-remain largely unaware that two of their own party have designs to betray the group and prevent G.O.D. from rebooting from an earlier version; but so far Bill the Elf has been unable to steal the Sacred USB from Marvin the Cleric (being under the suspicious eye of Sandi the Bikini-Chainmail Barbarian Warrior, who's clearly shown herself to be badass enough to potentially kick the shit out of Bill); while meanwhile Rickandra has to deal with a demon-patron that's just not made for these sorts of intrigues, as the Lord of All Flesh's best idea thus far is to have Rickandra draw up a magic circle that would conjure up one of the Lord of All Flesh's Infinite Sphincters as a means to spirit the USB away from G.O.D.'s reach forever.

-Find that the Lord of All Flesh does have at least some use, however, when Rickandra is able to cause a spontaneous orgy among the Reverend and his congregants, as a means to make sure none of them will be able to betray or rob the party as they rest up for the night.

-are surprised to discover the next morning that the Reverend has spinned this church-profaning debauchery as a "miracle"; "of course it's a miracle!", he says, "it would have to be for anyone to want to sleep with most of my congregants!"

-decide, as a party, to get out of Goodwind as quickly as possible, as (much to Bill the Elf's chagrin) they can't even wreck this civilization, since its inhabitants have already done a sterling job of that themselves.

-take advantage of the Rev. Hijo de Puta's offer to have his cousin (Ernesto Hijo de Puta) get them out of town in his Peruvian-drawn cart, for only 30000 pesos (or 12 gp, with the "blue" exchange rate) apiece.

-discover, in spite of Bill's best efforts, that Bill the Elf also plans to take advantage of the situation, bribing Ernesto and conspiring with him to have the Mouth Clan Hooligans ambush them and kill Marvin.

-don't realize, however, that Bill has also overheard Dr. Theobald exposing his planned betrayal.

-have concluded that trying to figure out where Jaluddin the Rogue is hiding is a bit like playing "where's waldo".

-see the shit completely hit the fan, as the Clerics and Bill race to take each other out first.

-watch Bill make a completely ineffectual 'first strike', managing only to light one of the Peruvians on fire.

-are all pretty surprised when it turns out the Clerics win, and G.O.D. actually comes through, incinerating Bill the Elf with a truly serious Lightning Bolt of Divine Wrath.

-proceed to loot the life's work of Bill's countless misdeeds.

-don't know that Bill the Elf had a phylactery, in Sezrekan's possession, and the restoration of G.O.D.'s authority is the one circumstance which would make Sezrekan not hesitate to revive Bill, rather than forget about him.  Thus, Bill the Elf's mind, soul and power come to reside in the body of Valerius the Human. (technically, this makes him a Human-race/Elf-class character!).

-learn that "Valerius the human", before he was lost to the phylactery, was a rogue known as "valerius the crafty", though he clearly wasn't crafty enough not to fall into Sezrekan's trap, or to convince Sezrekan that he'd be of more use than Bill the Elf.

-suspect that Sezrekan might very quickly have come to regret that strategic choice, as Bill the Elf almost immediately blows the elements of surprise and subterfuge in pursuit of quick revenge; putting the entire party on paranoid high-alert, and then proceeds to murder Rickandra, the only member of the group that shared his goals of stopping the cleric, leaving himself without potential allies.

-are jaw-droppingly shocked to find G.O.D. save the clerics a second time, by teleporting the whole party to safety!

-see Marvin the Cleric start to believe that maybe G.O.D. really is protecting him, as his Chosen One.

-unanimously agree that this means Marvin will probably die very soon.

-note that Valerius the Human (formerly Bill the Elf) failed to effectively play 'where's waldo' with Jaluddin, at the cost of taking a dagger in the lungs, and getting captured.

-finally get to the end of the Pampas of Destruction, in the border of the Vast Southern Jungle.

-get to the moment where it hits them that with Bill the Elf "dead", and without his Planar Step to rely on, they might never be able to get back to Ice Dome Zero.

-also discover that, although Dr. Theobald's Ape Kingdoms are kind of close-by, it might not be the way to go, as Dr. Theobald admits that to his embarrassment (as one would expect from an evolved ape society) they keep humans as slaves.

-decide to keep Valerius (who they have not been able to decisively figure out is in fact Bill, but all agree he's clearly highly suspicious) bound as a prisoner as they enter the jungle.

-quickly discover, and try to make a deal with, a group of suit-wearing Green Mutants with suspicious behaviour.  They seem to know where the "Church of St.Ignatius of File Not Found" is located, and so the party hand themselves over in the hopes of bribing their "jefe" in exchange for being led there.

-overhear the Green Mutants acting quite concerned about the PCs' interest in the Church, and wondering if the PCs aren't actually part of "el DEA", whatever that is.

-Slowly start to figure out that they've stumbled upon a secret base of some kind of drug dealers, who may in fact be using the old Church of St. Ignatius as their warehouse.

-Are led to the palatial jungle mansion/hideout of 'el Jefe', who turns out to be none other than "Slothy" Rodriguez, the Uzi-wielding Vicious Sloth Drug Lord they'd been warned about in the last session! Or as the players immediately dubbed him: "Slothface".


There ended the session.  It wasn't entirely satisfying; Bill the Elf got what he deserved, and because of his Phylactery was able to survive (albeit with shittier physical stats and having lost most of his impressive amounts of stuff), while Rickandra died a permanent death at Bill's hands that the player could do nothing at all to prevent.  Rickandra's player felt it was quite unfair, and it was.  It was in-character for Bill the Elf to do it, but it was still a deeply shitty and frustrating way for him to go, and I felt quite unsatisfied with how it all went down, and thinking I could have or should have made some other sort of call as a GM there.

Now Rickandra's player has come in with a new level-1 graduate, a Purple Mutant Cyclops Thief, which I hope he'll come to like as much as Rick/Rickandra.  Meanwhile, Sezrekan's patience with Bill the Elf will only go so far.

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(February 18, 2015)
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DCC Campaign Log
« Reply #38 on: March 24, 2016, 08:21:47 AM »
DCC Campaign Update: Bring Me the Head of Slothy Rodriguez


This week's DCC session (after a four-week hiatus) had a nearly-full house of 7 players, and featured events worthy of any great gangland movie, full of violence, double-cross, revenge, magic missiles, and Dire Hippos. In the course of the session, the PCs:

-Came face to face with Slothy Rodriguez, Uzi-wielding Sloth and Purple Dust Kingpin of the great southern jungle.


-Discovered that Slothy's dungeon has a regular cell, and a cell for bound-and-gagged prisoners.

-Found Slothy's hospitality left a lot to be desired.

-Watched Bill the Ex-Elf (who the other PCs suspect of being a traitor but don't realize is the same guy they killed with divine wrath not two days ago) betray them yet again, suggesting to Slothy that the PCs were from the dreaded Theta cartel sent to assassinate him.

-Discovered just what purple dust does, even to an experienced narcologist like Bill, when he was required to snort a bowlful of it to prove he was not a double-agent from something called 'DEA'.

-Learned, while Bill was sleeping off his Purple Haze, that Slothy's idea of hospitality left even more to be desired when it came a "sumptuous feast" of jungle greens and grubs; disliked by all but Doctor Theobald, who noted that the grubs were just like the ones he used to pick out of his girlfriend's fur.

-Realize just in time that all the not-bound prisoners are about to be shot, while all the bound-and-gagged prisoners are about to be drenched in oil and burned alive while tied to poles.

-Find that if there's one thing Slothy Rodriguez can't stand, its when a good oil-drenched pole-immolation is ruined.

-Watched Slothy's consigliere try to reason with him, that it might be better to keep the PCs alive; only to see Slothy declare how sick to death he was of that guy giving him advice, and telling him not to kill people was just crossing the line.

-As usual, decide there's no delicate situation they aren't all too happy to trigger into a total pandemonium where any possibility of things working out goes straight to hell.

-Tried to cast darkness at the magic missile, just to mix things up a bit.

-Engaged in a rather excessive amount of groin-stabbing from under the dining room table.

-Noted an exception to the above from Sandy the Bikini-Chainmail Barbarian, who displayed her usual class and panache by charging over said table and engaging in some fork-based eye-gouging instead.

-Lost track of Marvin, the Chosen One of the Clerical order, who high-tailed it out of there in mid-combat with Dr. Theobald, trying to find their own way to the Church of St.Ignatius of File Not Found, in order to complete the sacred mission of plugging in the sacred USB Cable and Rebooting the World.

-Decided that rather than go find them, they'd first engage in some looting; what with Slothy Rodriguez and most of the upper hierarchy of his cartel lying dead.

-Fell victim at that point to Bill the Ex-elf, who trapped them in the complex's dungeons through creative use of the Ward Portal spell.

-Felt certain there must be another way out of said dungeons, what with fire regulations and all.

-Discovered, unfortunately, that said dungeons were a notable fire hazard.

-Watched with some dismay as Night the pirate-elf managed to escape the dungeon, but only by having her patron (the Senile King of Elfland) teleport her more than fifty years into the future.

-Were not all trapped down there, Ack'bashah the Cleric having gone off to try to find Marvin.

-Discovered that the threat of "los Thetas" was not just a paranoid fantasy on Slothy's part, but a real imminent and novel threat.

-Observed with some amusement that Los Thetas dressed like a mix of paramilitary forces with Lucha Libre wrestling masks with a big "Z" on the forehead.

-saw the remnants of Slothy's forces trying to put up a valiant defense, by unleashing Slothy's Dire Hippos against the Thetas' pickup trucks full of gunmen.

-noted, unfortunately, that Dr. Theobald and Marvin had been captured by Los Thetas, and were now at risk not only of being executed by the gangsters, but also of being mauled to death by the aforementioned Dire Hippos.

-found that Bill the Ex-Elf had beaten the rest of the group to the Church of St.Ignatius; but he hadn't beaten the Thetas, who had already captured the place.

-were not exactly shocked to discover that the Church had been converted by Slothy to be used as his main lab and storage facility for tons and tons of Purple Dust.

-Saw Bill the Ex-Elf's eyes light up in anticipation of the possibility of becoming a one-man drug kingpin after all this was over.

-felt that this was, at this point, a very appropriate theme song for the evening's session


-Were still mostly stuck in the dungeon while Bill the Ex-Elf immolated the Theta guards through creative use of the Sequester spell.

-Saw Bill the Ex-Elf know true fear in his moment of triumph, when just as he thought the Church was under his full and secure control, he saw someone had painted "I know you're Bill" on the wall in green mutant blood; and realized that once again he'd failed his perception check to spot the presence of Jal'udin the Rogue.

-Found, meanwhile, that the majority of the group's imprisonment in the dungeons was finally about to come to an end; but only because the Thetas were planning to blow them to bits.

-Were only comforted by the fact that Bill the Ex-Elf was only holding off the main force of the Thetas from retaking the church by his haphazard attempts to combine cantrips with a ridiculous pantomime using the severed head of Slothy Rodriguez.

-Decided the best defense was a good offense, by making maximum use of the gender-indeterminate Azure Wizard Bytharion's Magic Missiles and Fly spell, Sandy's propensity to slaughter everything in her path, and the rogue's ever-increasing talent at groin-stabbing.

-Learned that in spite of Bill the Ex-Elf's pleading, Jal'udin the Rogue is really only in it for himself.

-Were amused by a totally unrelated side-situation where Night, who had been shot half a century into the future, ended up accidentally killing her own child: a magic deer that stood for all goodness and purity and would restore joy and happiness to the whole forest through its magical fiat power. After causing its accidental death, she only learned it was her son after trying to get back to the past, ending up getting back about a decade too early, and hooking up with a minor Horned God. Apparently when Elves and Horned Gods mate, they make magic-deer-babies. whether or not all of these are doomed to be killed by their own mother six decades later is unclear.  In any case, Night made it back to the group, the slow way.

-Cheered when the clerics managed to use Divine Aid to get into the Church of St. Ignatius.  But the leader of the Thetas, "El Commandante", decides that this is the last straw, and he's just going to kill every last gringo he sees.  El Commandante can be distinguished from the rest of the Thetas because he wears a little beret on top of his Mexican Wrestler mask.

-Held their breath as the Clerics, fighting for G.O.D. and the salvation of the world, face off for the last time against Bill the Ex-Elf, fighting for the daemon Sezrekan and his own greed.  Both sides plead for the still-hidden Jal'udin's intervention, but everyone is pretty convinced that at this point, Jal'udin is just one of these guys who wants to see the world burn.

-Are surprised by how the Clerics, a class which until now in the campaign had largely been distinguished as one long comedy of errors and apparently endless suffering, manage to beat the crap out of the Elf, which until now had been the ass-kicker class of the campaign.

-See triumph turn to tragedy when, just on the verge of triumph, the Thetas shower Marvin a hail of gunfire, killing him.

-Watch Ack'bashah the Cleric think that it is his time now to be the chosen one, only to have forgotten about Jal'uddin; he is very promptly reminded by a sharp pain in the back of the head and the dark embrace of unconsciousness.

The rest of the team got back together in time to wipe out the Thetas, but by the time they got into the Church found that Marvin and Bill had been ritually sacrificed, and Jal'udin and the Sacred USB Cable were gone.  Apparently, Jal'udin had a bidding war between G.O.D. and Sezrekan for the rights to the Cable:  G.O.D. offered Jal'udin the chance to heal the world. Sezrekan offered him power, money, and women. Obviously, Sezrekan won.  Slothy Rodriguez would have been proud.

As for Bill, now that Sezrekan has an even more competent servant working for him, he has no immediate need for Bill, who screwed up twice in a row, so Bill will likely be staying in side his soul-phylactery for some time to come.  But situations do change, so we may not have seen the last of him...

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(March 19, 2015)
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DCC Campaign Log
« Reply #39 on: April 07, 2016, 05:30:51 PM »
DCC Campaign: My "Themes"


I have mixed feelings about the ideas of 'themes' in RPG settings.  You don't see me talking about them too often; and more often than not when people do talk about it, it's to sound pretentious.

But 'themes' do happen, and they don't necessarily have to be snooty.  The Venture Brothers has a theme (failure).  The Big Bang Theory has a theme (nerds are laughable), for what it's worth.  Good and bad movies, shows, literature, comics and game settings will have themes, most of them not put there by someone trying to feel full of himself.

Most of the time, the "themes" in my RPG campaigns are pretty much background stuff; Traveller, for example, has little more than "maniacs flying around the galaxy".  Albion's is obviously something about adventure, battle, and intrigue during the Rose War.

But ironically perhaps, my most gonzo and easygoing campaign of all, my DCC "Last Sun" campaign, has the most sophisticated themes.

The first and foremost one is "Decay".  Things falling apart, inexorably; by the time of the campaign's start things have been sliding into chaos for a long time already, and as the campaign proceeds they just get worse.  Wherever the PCs go, there's cultures, some that could be called civilizations, many of which are just ruins but others that appear to be thriving.  Yet the underlying clarity of things is that none of these look like they're going to get any better, the best they can is a holding pattern against the great collapse that has afflicted the world of the last sun. It is, in other words, a post-apocalyptic sci-fantasy setting, and one that is particularly cynical in its undertone, given its overall goofy/gonzo feel.

Another theme is the idea of there being no higher powers to help you.  The Ancients created the world of the Last Sun, but then they vanished.  The 'Dark Ones' allegedly ruined it, but no one has seen them either.  G.O.D. is only a machine, that has been driven insane by the emergency, and is largely irrational about when he gives divine aid and when he shows disapproval.  The Daemons are all rebellious AIs that escaped G.O.D.'s control and are themselves either insane, evil, totally selfish, or utterly uncaring.  No one mightier than the PCs (and a few well-intentioned NPCs) are actually out there that would either care or be capable of setting the world right again.

With the "God" of the setting being essentially a demiurge to totally distant architects, the setting itself has the quality of a gnostic dream, pushed on by the wacky surrealism of the setting.  The Last Sun is a world built around the very last star of the dying universe as an attempt to escape the end of all reality. The world is a bit like a bardo, a dream-state from Tibetan Buddhism; you could meet almost anything there.   Anything that ever existed might still be around in the world of the Last Sun.   There's lots of old weapons (including guns, and laser guns, and atom bombs and space-ships), and old knowledge (including old magic items and spells), but no one seems really able to make anything truly new.  It's like a dream before dying.

Even the core races have their own thematic ways of dealing with this decay:  for humans, it's fear.  Of the four core races, they're the closest to extinction, being over-run by more powerful creatures and the environment itself mutating them into something not-human.  What humans have shown up in the campaign are usually acting out of fear.

Elves are in denial.  They were the high-tech super-civilization before the Emergency.  Most of the surviving elf cultures weathered what they imagined to be the worst of it in the snug safety of their Domes, but disconnected from the rest of the world and cut off from the need to do anything useful, their society has decayed most of all.  There's the hipster elves, and the smug elves, and the emo elves, but it seems like any breed of elf that actually did anything has died out. They keep living their petty lives but have become useless, even to save themselves.

Dwarves are all about anger.  Driven away from their homes in the Deep Underground where they maintained the great world-machines for the Ancients, they seemed doomed to hopeless crusades to 'retake' everything they've lost, even though it's impossible. Their entire society is based on complaints and resentment.  They are good at playing defense but whenever they go on the offensive they get slaughtered.

For halflings, it's a kind of collaboration.  Whatever they once were, now they've become vicious bloodthirsty barbarian cannibals who have given up the semblance of being anything other than animals.  They are thriving in numbers (the only one of the four traditional core races that are) but only because they've completely given up on trying to fight decay and have become active agents in accelerating it. They live, but their culture is extinct, replaced with a feral savagery.

The real question of the campaign is whether the PCs, from their individual heroism, will ultimately find a way to triumph over this decay, to set the world right somehow, and what form that will take.

So I wrote all this here because sooner or later, I'm going to write a setting book about the world of the Last Sun, that's almost inevitable.  But when I do, it probably won't say any of this stuff explicitly.  Instead it will be full of stuff about laser-penguins and Sloth-druglords and talking ape civilizations and laser guns and all the other weird gonzo places and things of the world.  But I figure that this look at the underpinnings of the campaign should be said somewhere, for the sake of those who might be interested in looking at the underpinnings of things.

Because just like themes don't necessarily have to be pretentious, gonzo rpg campaigns don't necessarily have to be dumb.


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(April 8, 2015)
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DCC Campaign Log
« Reply #40 on: April 24, 2016, 03:36:03 AM »
DCC Campaign Update: Orange Shaman Psychic-Hotline


In this week's DCC game, the PCs:

-were given the generous offer by the Azure Order that the next time there was a situation that required putting one's very life in peril for some minor good and no guarantee of material compensation, the PCs would be the first in line.

-chuckled at the irony that Rick/Rickandra would be buried as a woman, as 'she had always wanted'.

-were determined to actually go find Sezrekan, kick the living shit out of him, and take back the Sacred USB Cable.

-were a little disheartened to learn that Sezrekan's tower isn't even on this dimension.

-were further disheartened when they realized that in the world of the Last Sun, the Azure Order are pretty much as great as it gets in terms of good-aligned, powerful, and reliable allies. There literally doesn't seem to be anyone else available that fits all three categories.

-went to buy some blowguns, but not to hunt the deadly Spindly-Killerfish.

-bored Sandy the Bikini-Chainmail Barbarian enough that she decided to go off and get herself totally wasted-drunk and beat the crap out of a bunch of tough-guy mutants... or as she calls it, "a short vacation".

-were presented with one of those aforementioned generous-offers by the Azure Order. But, finding themselves short-staffed, decided they needed some cannon fodd--er, new recruits.  So they picked up a superannuated street-urchin who was set loose in the forest by slavers after he proved too ugly to be purchased, an Orange Mutant apprentice-shaman with psychic powers, and an assistant re-animator.  It wasn't quite clear just what a 're-animator' does but he came with a brain in a jar.

-were sent south, to discover the cause of increased aggression by the Purple Mutant Barbarians, and resolve the mystery of what appear to be unprovoked and vicious attacks on local mutants by strange twisted Treants.  When told they had to go south, several party members responded at once with the quip that "this party has been going south for quite some time now.."

-Were surprised to encounter a hideous creature in the forest, somewhat resembling a 'grey alien' only fairly obese and wearing an expensive yet slightly-skanky dress, and a little tiara.
-Were even more surprised when she introduced herself as Queen Priscilla, of the Grey Lands, and said she was looking for Bill the Elf.  They were surprised, I note, because none of the player characters presently alive and in attendance this session had actually been around back when Queen Priscilla last appeared.

-found that Queen Priscilla was highly disraught at the news that Bill the Elf died; then came back, then died again, and now appears to be indisposed.

-Discovered that Queen Priscilla had hoped that Bill the Elf would help her reconquer her kingdom, as she had apparently been overthrown and exiled from her home dimension by "some green asshole", who they deduced was in fact the Game-Controller of the Jade Dimension, that had managed to flee from the PCs in that other dimension just before the PCs totally ruined it.  Apparently, he managed to set himself up nicely in the Grey Dimension; not that it was hard, since apparently the entirety of Queen Priscilla's people were despertate to see her overthrown.

(to visualize Priscilla, imagine a cross between this:)






(and this:)




-decide to take Priscilla with them, in the hopes of restoring her to her birthright of tyranny over the grey people, so that in exchange she will provide them an inter-dimensional army to move against Sezrekan.

-start to think, after about 30 straight minutes of Priscilla talking nonstop about what a slag Tiffany is, and how Brad is totally into her and not Tiffany, but Tiffany lied about Priscilla having herpes so she could get him to sleep with her instead, because she's a total slut, that they've made a terrible, terrible mistake.

-decide it's time to use the Silence spell.  Which gives them about six melee rounds of peace and quiet, only to have Priscilla start all over again.  They then decide that it's time for Sandy to use her "silence spell", which involves Sandy using a club to beat Priscilla into unconsciousness.

-Spend much of the night by the campfire arguing, over the sound of Priscilla's loud snoring, about whether an inter-dimensional army would really be worth another 24 hours, much less possibly weeks, with Priscilla.  The Cleric Aq'basha, filled with thirst for vengeance against Sezrekan, believes it is.  The rest of the party thinks it isn't, except for the ex-street-waif that thinks he "might have a shot with" Priscilla, causing everyone to question his eyesight or his sanity.

-watch as the Psychic Orange Mutant Apprentice-Shaman claims to Sandy that he can effectively read fortunes with his divination bones.  Sandy decides to put it to the test by asking him to make a prediction; if he's right, she'll give him a shiny gold piece. If he's wrong, she'll break something in his body.

-Are all surprised at the Orange Mutant's luck (or perhaps real ability?) when he predicts rain and it does in fact start to drizzle a little the next day.

-Proceed to the south, killing a few hapless kobolds and making a point of keeping Priscilla sedated by periodic clubbings.

-watch as a still-skeptical Sandy challenges the Orange Mutant a second night, with the same 'wager'.  He "predicts" that the party will soon have a detour through some ruins.

-run into a group of Green Mutant Barbarian warriors, who are at war with the hyper-aggressive Purple Mutants.

-Have to do a bit of explaining at the presence of a (non-barbarian) purple mutant (Shul the rogue) among them.  But eventually convince the Green Mutants that they're here to deal with the Purple Mutants, and that they should be taken to the Green Mutant village.

-learn that the Purple Mutant Barbarians have always been assholes, but have become completely warlike after converting to the worship of something called the Necro-Treant.

-are amused as Shul the Rogue, realizing that he might run into some serious trouble in a village full of people who despise purple mutants, tries to use his 'disguise' skill and Queen Priscilla's makeup kit to hide his racial identity. Rather than ending up looking like a non-purple mutant, he manages to end up looking like something along the lines of a Purple Mutant Circus-Clown/Prostitute.

-meet the Green Mutant Chief, and try to convince him that all the other mutant tribes in the region must join forces against the Purple Mutants, the Necro-Treant, and his army of Zombie-Treants. The Orange Mutant Shaman decides to try his luck by suggesting they do the meeting in "the ruins", and turns out to have once again shown his amazing psychic-skills/luck by the response that indicates that there are indeed ruins (albeit "forbidden" ones) nearby.

-note that Sandy, immediately after paying the Orange Mutant yet another shiny gold piece, is especially interested in going to ruins that are "forbidden", since there's likely to be stuff to kill and/or loot there, and her urge to break people has not been fulfilled in quite some time.

-decide to head off to the ruins, leaving Priscilla behind at the Green Mutant village, in the spare time they have while they wait for the great council of mutant chiefs (that will take place in the "sacred grove").

-find that the forbidden ruins are full of deadly spindly-killerbeetles.

-force the creepy ex-street-waif to poke the beetle nest with his 10' pole until they all rush him.  Then wait until the orphan is dead before cutting the beetles to pieces.  Generally agree that having gotten rid of the pervy street-waif and having gained a six-pack of magic potions and 25000 platinum pieces was a very good trade-off.

-camp out near the ruins, where Sandy again engages in some prophecy fun-time with the Orange Shaman, having quickly turned from being an angry skeptic to a true-believer in the Shaman's Psychic-hotline skills.  He makes the unlikely prediction that Sandy (by far the best fighter of the party) will do poorly in battle and have her abilities fall into doubt.

-get attacked that night by a positively terrifying Zombie-Treant.

-get themselves into a tight spot when the rogues find their backstabs do nothing, the cleric fails his attempt at divine-aid, and Sandy, incredibly, keeps missing her attack rolls.

-start to wonder whether the Orange Shaman's predictions are a prophecy or a kind of curse; not that he will comment in mid-battle, as he's busy faking a heart-attack and playing dead in the desperate hope the Treant won't tear him to pieces.

-are only saved at the last minute by a hail-mary (pardon the pun) second Divine-Aid attempt on the part of the Cleric, where he manages to call down the lightning on the Zombie Treant.

-start to realize that to the cleric, his new big bag of platinum pieces are really little more than 'get-out-of-divine-disapproval' tokens.

-return to the Green Mutant Village only to find that it's been raided by the Purple Mutants, that two of the Chief's daughters have been kidnapped to be used as sacrifices to the Necro-Treant, and that Queen Priscilla has been taken as well.

-decide they'll have to try to rescue the Chief's daughters, even if that means they'll probably have to rescue Priscilla as well.

-want to go to the great gathering of the Chiefs first, and convince the Green Mutant Chief to come with them after all (he'd initially decided to forget the whole thing, after being told of something the Orange Mutant psychic had said in passing).

-Get to the Sacred Grove only to find that the chiefs of all the other mutant tribes have been slaughtered by a force of Purple Mutants and Zombie-Treants; one unit of which end up encountering the party and attacking.

-once again find themselves in a very tight spot; especially after the cowardly Green Mutant Chief runs away rather than fight it out.  But this time the Orange Mutant Shaman manages to distract the Treant by drinking a potion of animal control and summoning a large flock of woodpeckers to harass it.  Suddenly, the battle has become, for the zombie-treant, a scene out of a Hitchcock movie.

-Manage to destroy the Treant and kill most of the Purple Mutants (except a couple that they keep to interrogate with extreme prejudice), but are saddened by the tragic death by spear-blow of the Orange Mutant Psychic, just as the tide of battle was turning.

-can't help but note that the Psychic sure didn't see that one coming...


RPGPundit

(april 17, 2015)
LION & DRAGON: Medieval-Authentic OSR Roleplaying is available now! You only THINK you've played 'medieval fantasy' until you play L&D.


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DCC Campaign Log
« Reply #41 on: May 15, 2016, 08:53:31 AM »
DCC Campaign Update: Birth of the Cyber-Redneck


In this adventure, the PCs were caught up in the midst of:

-The Cleric Ack'Basha falling deeper and deeper into the rabbit-hole of his implausible revenge-fantasy against Sezrekan.

-the new Warrior in the party, Byfeld, turning out to be pretty much based on this guy:



-discussing whether someone could "Forest Walk" through a Necrotreant; and deciding to err on the side of caution

-a minor incident when the Warrior Redneck claims that "all purple mutants look alike".

-A series of other George-W-Bushisms from said Redneck Warrior

-coming to the realization that Schul, the party's rogue, is a really terrible liar.  As in, really bad at it.

-Encountering the dreaded Necrotreant, and learning that among his various statements of religious-policy, he has declared hats an abomination.





-meeting the Purple Mutant Chief, who is desperate to prove that he's still totally relevant, and has not at all been completely marginalized into obscurity by the Necrotreant and his religious cult of shaman-wizards.

-Bush-related paranoia.  Not as in George W., but as in literal bushes.  It's scary to try to sneak up on the Necrotreant in the middle of a forest when the dude can apparently turn any foliage into a horrific vegetable-undead monstrosity.

-A near-interminable rambling and pointless anecdote from the King of Elfland, who is very clearly the Grandpa Simpson of Daemon-Patrons

-realizing that to the Necrotreant, it's not just hats; pretty much EVERYTHING is an "abomination".

-finding that the whole of the Purple Mutant Tribe is just in denial. Caught up in their best chance ever to destroy their hated enemies, the Smug Elves of the Silver Dome, they've managed to convince themselves that when the NecroTreant says that "mutants are an abomination", he obviously must mean all those OTHER mutants, not them.  Surely this won't come back to bite them in the ass.



(to be fair, there's few things worse than a smug elf)

-Realizing that for the moment it's probably better to join them rather than try to beat them; though joining them might mean having to eat a delicious-looking stew made out of Green Mutant Princesses.

-reluctantly joining the cause of the NecroTreant in exchange for Queen Priscilla of the Grey People being liberated, rather than added to the stew.  And immediately regretting it, because now they have to put up with Queen Priscilla again.  Queen Priscilla, on the other hand, is very pleased with the death of her fellow princesses, since she was pretty sure they were all "skanks" who "probably had STDs".

-Discovering new boundaries to just how badass Sandy the Bikini-Chainmail Barbarian is, when she manages to be terrifyingly threatening while armed with nothing more than a sharpened carrot.

-Figuring out that casting Sleep while floating sixty feet in the air might not be such a good idea, if you misfire and end up dozing off in mid-flight and plummeting to your near-death.

-the clear confirmation that the Purple Mutant Chief is definitely no longer in any way relevant.

-Finding that the Purple Mutants like the worship hard, sacrifice hard, and then party hard with a post-cannibalism rave dance.  It's pretty much like that with all barbarians, as the party's willingness to party is pretty evenly split along barbarian/civilized lines.

-waking up the next morning with a variety of levels of hangover; the best case being very mild, the worst cases being Redneck Warrior who got into a drunken knife-fight, and Queen Priscilla who accidentally killed a Purple Mutant during some heavy necking when she forgot that she was poisonous to humanoids.  Fortunately, Schul the Rogue might be a really bad liar, but he is a fully-trained former grave-digger.

-getting that Queen Priscilla may be the most annoying entity in the multiverse, when she can manage to get Ack'Basha the normally placid party cleric to mock-drown her in a bucket of water.  Though he was still nice enough to give her a potion of water-breathing first.  Predictably, Queen Priscilla thinks Ack'Basha is the 'perviest cleric ever' and that he's obviously doing it because he 'fancies' her.

-An assessment of their present choices:  Night the Elf is fighting a one-woman guerrilla war against the NecroTreant, while everyone else in the party has decided to join him in his assault on the Silver Dome.  No one is sure if either is really a good idea.

-Deciding to get the heck out of Dodge (or rather, of the Purple Mutant town of Cordallen) while the getting is good; but pausing briefly so Redneck Warrior can pick up some wild carrots to make up for the one he lost in the drunken knife-fight.

-later deciding to tie Queen Priscilla to a tree and abandon her in the woods while going to see how the Purple-Mutant/Smug-Elf battle-royale goes down.

-Watching as the Elven lightning-gun defenses cause a near-immediate rout among the panicky purple mutants.  But things get interesting when the NecroTreant apparently sacrifices all of his undead treants to drive roots up against the foundations of the Dome, cracking it open.

-Continuing to watch from the security of a hiding place as the Purple mutants rally, only to flee again when their shamans accidentally botch their Choking Cloud spell and cause a lethal poison-gas attack on their own ranks.  Things get worse when the Elves release their hunter-killer droids; but the NecroTreant still has some tricks up his sleeve, as he entangles them in fungal vines until the robots are crushed.

-Finally deciding to join the fray, or at least try to make a dash-and-grab for some quick loot, when they see the Purple Mutant elite warriors sneaking their way toward the crack in the dome while carrying a mysterious and elaborate box that just screams 'secret weapon'.

-Managing to get through the crack under a spell of darkness only to get pinned down under a hail of blaster fire from Elven and Android troops.

-attempting to hold against the barrage; all except Night, who flies off to keep an eye on the NecroTreant, and Byfeld the Redneck Warrior, who tries to hide inside the Secret-Weapon-Box even though it's clearly not large enough for him to fit in.

-Discovering that the Secret-Weapon box is filled with hideous writhing fungal-undead seeds.  Not sure what else to do, and seeing his team-mates on the verge of getting slaughtered, Redneck Warrior decides to do what he does best and smash the living shit out of the weird seed-pods.

-observing the shattering of the NecroTreant's dreams of purity, as the seeds he planned to germinate in an explosion of the Silver Dome's powersphere (an explosion that would have utterly annihilated all life within a radius of a thousand miles) to create a new race of Mutant NecroTreants are destroyed by a human yokel with an oversized mace.

-running like hell from the super-efficient Smug Elves and their Android soldiers, abandoning the critically-injured Redneck Warrior to his fate.

-an act of blatant opportunism as Night the Elf takes advantage of the NecroTreant's distracted grief to hit him with every spell he's got. As it turns out, the King of Elfland's modified 'haste' spell provides Night with ALMOST enough power to kill the already-wounded NecroTreant; fortunately for Night, good old-fashioned fire manages to finish the job before the NecroTreant can retaliate with his death ray.

-groaning as the King of Elfland, who just maybe, maybe, is not quite as senile as he lets on, cannot resist the pun of saying that the NecroTreant's "bark" was worse than his bite.

-a denoument, as Byfeld the Redneck Warrior wakes up in the middle of the Tangled Forest, finding that instead of being elf-food, he's been set loose in the forest, and his horrific laser-injuries repaired in the form of a cybernetic lower-body... and possibly a mind-controlling brain-implant.


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DCC Campaign Log
« Reply #42 on: May 19, 2016, 12:57:11 AM »
Real (Gonzo) Alignments for Dungeon Crawl Classics

Or at least, real alignments for how my own "Last Sun" DCC campaign works.

I've come to realize that awesome as the Law-Neutral-Chaos mix goes, it's not really complete.  There IS very clearly another axis of alignment at play in my campaign.  But it's not Good-Neutral-Evil; that just doesn't make a lot of sense in the context of how the world works.

No.  Here is the real alignment axis:

Law/Neutral/Chaos: you already know these.

Do-Gooder: Potentially also called "boy scout", "whitebread", "sucker" or "Mormon".  The wholesome types that actually believe in trying to save the ruined world.  The guys who will stand up to evil because of a set of principles, without there needing to be anything else in it for them.  Almost certainly doomed to get eaten by something horrible.

Freak: Potentially also called "weirdo", "maniac", or "hopped up on goofballs".  They'd be called 'lunatics' if anyone in the world of the Last Sun knew what a moon was.  These guys believe in something, but it sure as hell isn't principles.  They want whatever thing they want, whether it's to serve great cthulhu, get high, have interesting conversations, collect hats, reconquer the lost dwarven homeland, punk rock, or eat people's delicious spleens.  They don't really care about either saving the world or saving themselves, only about their own particular obsessions.  Almost certainly doomed to get eaten by something horrible.

Asshole: Potentially also called "dick", or "Bill the Elf". There are more of these guys than anyone else in the world of the Last Sun, which pretty much explains why things have gotten as bad as they have.  These are the people who are in it for the money, the power, and the women (or men, or attractive entities of indeterminate gender, or sex-robots, or whatever).  Some of them want to conquer entire dimensions, some want to see the world burn, a few of them just want to get to make other people miserable, and most of them just want to stay alive long enough to get to their next drink.  Almost certainly doomed to get eaten by something horrible, after all their former friends have been eaten first.

Here's the detailed breakdown:

Lawful Do-Gooder: these are the guys who want to bring back civilization and heal the world, and will work for it in an organized fashion.  They're well-meaning but usually hampered by their own rules, and by a lack of numbers.  The only significant groups in the world of the Last Sun that fit this alignment and are still around seem to be the Clerics (who have lost any kind of institutional order at this point, and are consistently undone by virtue of G.O.D. having gone insane).   The long-defunct Pythian (Elven) Knights were probably also Lawful Do-Gooders too, but destroyed themselves in some as-yet unrevealed fashion.  Lawful Do-Gooders will tend to put procedure over the actual doing of good, which can mean slaughtering people who don't fit the plan for saving the world, or not really helping out of bureaucratic inertia when the shit is hitting the fan.  The Time Dinosaurs may also be Lawful Do-gooders, what with their being highly religiously devout, but if so are apparently extremely constrained by rules against most kinds of temporal interference.

Neutral Do-Gooder:  The guys who want to help everyone as best as possible.  Represented by a variety of individuals, and as a group by the Azure Order of Wizards, who are the nicest people seen in the setting thus far.  Usually overwhelmed by the overall shittiness of the world but they can often make little gains at helping small groups and local areas to be more tolerable.

Chaotic Do-Gooder: They generally want to help everyone, one person at a time.  Have no tolerance for group work beyond an immediate circle of friends, or for any rules that get in the way of doing what they personally define as good. Arguably, Anthraz the Destroyer (the greatest adventurer there ever was, now in his dotage) could be a Chaotic Do-Gooder, because he usually only slaughtered Assholes and tried to help people, sort of. So is Doctor Theobald, the Ape-man intellectual.

Lawful Freak:  Cultists of organized pseudo-religious sects and gangs like the Halcon Lords; or groups that follow some single cause that isn't actually going to make the world any better but that's important to them. Note that they sometimes THINK that whatever they're doing is going to somehow 'fix everything' but this claim never stands up to reason. The Dwarves as a culture have mostly become Lawful Freaks at this point, obsessed with avenging their various grievances from the Book of Grievances and with the (seemingly impossible) task of reclaiming their ancient homelands in the deep Machine Levels under the earth. The NecroTreant was also an example of a lawful freak: he wanted to abolish all life as an "abomination" and leave the world an irradiated wasteland where only his seed-children would thrive. The Eco-Ogres were another good example. Likewise, the Daemon(s?) known as the Three Fates.  As individuals, they have their own set of Crazy Rules and they won't break them.

Neutral Freak:  these guys really don't care about anything except their Thing. They'll display an almost catatonic level of disinterest in whatever isn't related to that Thing.  They'll try to make everything about that Thing.  They can otherwise be nice, or terrible, or just bland, but will inevitably end up being annoying.  Bolt-O the Robot, the King of Elfland, Frenchy the Gold Mutant Gold-miner, the Hipster Elves, and any number of mutant tribes (who have often elevated their particular Thing into taboos or fetishes) are the prime examples from the campaign.

Chaotic Freak:  the guys who have just spent way too long staring into the Eye of the Void.  Their "thing" is usually to up the level of Chaos itself wherever they go.  The weaker adherents of this alignment will usually meet a quick death for being insufferable gits; while the more powerful ones are the crazy motherfuckers that you most want to stay away from, because you can't reason with them, can't offer them anything (except maybe by random chance), and you never know what they'll do to you.  The Wizard Nikos is the best example of this alignment in the campaign, followed closely by the Daemon Azi-Dahaka.

Lawful Asshole:  These are the guys who use rules to rule.  They are the evil overlords, the gang leaders, the tribal chiefs, or the Collective Assholes who don't give a fuck about anything other than things being done their way.  Also, rules-lawyers.  The campaign is so full of these guys that it would be hard to list them all:  the Smug Elves, The Assassin King, The Snake Witch, Goldeater, and many more.

Neutral Asshole:  this is your standard run-of-the-mill Asshole.  The default alignment for most people in the setting.  Not devoted enough to anything to stand out, for the most part, but definitely in it for themselves.  If they end up getting power of a personal or political variety they'll mostly use it to engage in wanton hedonism.  Priscilla the Queen of the Grey People is a Neutral Asshole (a particularly annoying one), as is the Jade Empire Games Controller (now the new King of the Grey People), the Jade Empress, the now-deceased Dragon-Daemon Tiamat, and various others.  Most of the non-cleric PCs we've had over the years of the campaign have been Neutral Assholes.

Chaotic Asshole:  these are the assholes who are all about themselves, just about all the time.  They can work with others (they're not nuts) but when they want something they won't hesitate to knife their grandmother in the back to get it.  They'd gladly save the world if you paid them enough or gave them right magic item, but would just as gladly betray you after.  They can end up with temporal power as well, but unlike Lawful Assholes won't really see that as an end, just a means to an end; they don't usually care about ruling over others. Most Halflings in the setting are Chaotic Assholes. So was the late sloth/crime-lord Slothy-Rodriguez. Likewise, the Daemons Sezrekan and the Lord of All Flesh, and of course Bill the Elf.


Anyways, that's it.  I think this new Alignment model could work really well not just for my DCC game, but probably for quite a few gonzo OSR-campaigns out there.  Feel free to use them!


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DCC Campaign Log
« Reply #43 on: May 29, 2016, 05:05:49 PM »
DCC Campaign Update: Genocide, the Easy Way


So in this week's adventure, we found:


-Night the Elf trying to bond to a second patron, having gotten sick of the King of Elfland's Senile crap.

-by sheer random chance, coming up with the king of Elfland again when rolling for a random patron (5% chance).

-the local village blacksmith showing a lack of metallurgy knowledge by failing to identify electrum, deciding it was a brand new metal, and calling it "Smithium", in his own honor.

-said blacksmith trying to subtly generate a market for his new metal by creating and showing off Smithium jewelry.

-Schul the rogue discovering an Azure Wizard secretly engaging in (forbidden) service to the Lord of All Flesh.

-the village smith correctly identifying the Cyborg-Redneck's new lower body as a Titanium/Dolomite composite, in spite of his inability to recognize electrum.

-the smith's second line of jewelry, of mixed 'smithium' and platinum, or as he calls it, "Smithplium".

-the shocking abduction of Night by what appear to be dwarven ninjas riding a cyborg dragon.




(dwarf ninjas, yes)

-that Feld, Son of Feldstein, the dwarf who had absconded with the huge treasure-hoard the PCs had stolen from Tiamat's corpse, has returned. And he has a band of half-cybernetic dwarven-ninja followers and Cyber-Dragon allies.  When he goes to take back the lost Dwarven Machineholds he's going to do it the smart way!  Unfortunately, he has to kill the new Dragon King, Marduk, first because Marduk wants him, and (as it turns out the PCs) dead for having slain Tiamat.

-Night being held captive along with the ex-Azure-Wizard turned Lord of Flesh cultist.

-Feld making the mistake of undoing the wizard's gag, allowing him to call on the lord of flesh for "Sexy time".

-the rest of the PCs heading north in search of something to kill and loot.

-said PCs running into Giant Weasels; but it was they who ripped the weasel's flesh.



(substitute Han Solo for Quillian the rogue, and you get the idea)

-Night recovering from her degenerate stupor to find herself in a princess-leia/jabba situation with the Leader-Cyberdragon; and learning from him that they are on one of the great floating islands far above the earth, in the Cyberdragon HQ known as "Aerie 51".

-Night learning that the Dragons plan to attack the damaged Silver Dome while the Smug Elves are still recovering from the attack of the NecroTreant, steal the Dome's Powersphere and use it to blow Marduk to smithereens.  They Cyberdragons are in revolt against Marduk because they will have no leader (except the Cyberdragon leader, of course, but the Cyberdragon-leader assures her "that's different").

-that also, the Cyberdragons use their cybernetics to communicate in a semi-hivemind, or as they put it "we are legion, united by our superior Social Media!".  To which the dwarves simply reply "and we are dwarves".

-the rest of the PCs, down below, spotting one of the Cyberdragon scouts, which takes an interest in the Cyber-Redneck's clearly Smug-elven cybernetics.

-that when said scout kidnaps the Cyber-Redneck, the rest of the PCs try to hop on and "ride the dragon".

-that unfortunately, while the two Rogues have no trouble jumping on, Ack'Basha the Cleric falls flat on his face; and Sandy the Bikini-Chainmail Barbarian gets knocked off the first time the dragon swerves.

-the Cleric managing to use Divine Aid effectively to teleport into Aerie 51 at the same time as the Cyber-dragon scout does.

-Night causing the worst game of 'broken telephone' ever, when she sends a vague message that leads both sides to mistakenly believe that Bill the Elf (rather than the much less menacing Night the Elf) is in the Aerie.  Both sides hate Bill and assume he's aiding the other side.

-the matter clearing up, however, just as Night invokes the King of Elfland to teleport her away before suffering the wrath of the Cyberdragons, cybernetic ninja-dwarves, and her fellow PCs.

-the rest of the PCs trying to negotiate with Feld, based on their collective hatred of Bill the Elf.

-the Cyber-Redneck finding out that his cybernetics come with a mind-control chip-implant that could potentially turn him into a mindless drone of the Smug Elves.

-Schul and Quillian, the two rogues, happily accepting the Cyber-dragon's offer of being given free "totally awesome" cyber-implants themselves, in spite of only just hearing just how easily the whole thing could, and almost certainly is, a trick to make them drones.

-that most of Feld's dwarves had taken up the offer already, leading the the other PCs to realize that the Cyber-dragons are just using Feld.

-that unfortunately for Night, the King of Elfland appears to have screwed up as usual, and set her several hundred years into the past, when the Azure Tower is just being built.

-that the future paranoia of the Azure Order about not sharing their spells and items with anyone outside their group may have inadvertently been caused by Night's ill-chosen words.

-Night giving the early Azure-Wizards a simple message to send to Tiamat, and thus accidentally changing the entire timeline as Tiamat ends up wiping out every last Cyber-dragon in reaction to this message.  Night's player gets 4xp for easily-accomplished genocide; and most of what the PCs just went through in this session didn't actually ever happen now.

-Night gets back to the present, and the PCs find themselves back in the village, all with vague memories about what had been happening (and then ended up never happening at all).  Meanwhile Night has lost her armor, her Wizard Staff, and most of her items as a result of her shenanigans, as they are lost somewhere in the temporal paradox.  She also used massive spellburn to get through it all, and only now does the King of Elfland tell her that she cannot regain any of her spellburned attributes until she obtains for him a Violet Lotus Shrubbery.  Welcome to massive attribute penalties, Night.

-Ack'Basha the Cleric is particularly peeved at the sudden change of timeline; as he had been just on the verge of hammering out a PC-Cyberdragon-DwarfNinja alliance that would have them all work together to slay Marduk and then go after Sezrekan (his one burning obsession lately); only to have Timey-Wimey shit ruin it all for him.




(the King of Elfland is a little bit like Doctor Who, if Time Lords got Alzheimer's)


-Night reasoning that, at least, surely her temporal intervention has made things better in the present; but the King of Elfland assures her that no, in fact she made things "much worse", though he doesn't explain how.

-the PCs willing to forgive Night and help her in her quest for the Shrubbery, and realizing that the violet lotus is a highly hallucinogenic substance (which may, in fact, explain a lot about the King of Elfland), perhaps such a shrubbery might be found in the city of Highbay.  So off they go en route to visit the "City of Junkies".

-the line "When we get to Highbay, we'll ALL be 'riding the dragon'!".

-the PCs, en route through the Tangled Wood toward the coast, discovering that apparently Smithplium Jewelry is catching on; with forest creatures refusing to believe the PCs that it's just electrum, and claiming that something called "the Fashion Bear" has endorsed it.


(this was the first image that came up when I googled "fashion bear"; I was thinking more along the lines of an actual bear, but now I might just have to make this guy into an NPC for this campaign)

-the gang being accosted in the deeper part of the forest by a pair of shady-looking Mobster-Unicorns, who demand magic items in exchange for being allowed to pass through "their" forest unmolested.

-Night starting a fight, wherein the unicorns subject the PCs to blasts of "Rainbow Power, Bitch!", not to mention being viciously horn-gored; but a well-placed Force Ball injures and then Schul the Rogue's dagger kills one Unicorn and the other teleports away.

-that this was not the end of it, however, as the surviving unicorn comes back to avenge his brother, accompanied by his friend, a Kung-Fu trained Wuxia Cow named "Hooves of Steel".

-the Cyber-Redneck being viciously hoof-beaten to death by a wuxia cow, and Schul the Rogue being nearly killed via Unicorn-horn-based violence; before Sandy the Barbarian (annoyed at her sleep being interrupted two nights in a row) murders the Unicorn by throwing her mace at it, and the kung-fu cow by throwing her dining fork at it.

That's it for today.  Next session, the trip to Highbay will no doubt continue, probably accompanied by more eccentric forest-creature violence.


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DCC Campaign Archive: The Bean-Thing From the Furry Bay
« Reply #44 on: June 12, 2016, 01:41:18 AM »
The PCs started this week's DCC session mourning the death of the Cyber Redneck (and by "mourning" I mean looting the corpse).  Shortly thereafter, they witnessed the return of Bytharion the Gender-indeterminate Wizard.  And immediately after that, the arrival of three new 0-level Hero-Newbs.  It was noted a strange curiosity that in this world, cannon-fodder always came in groups of three; an explanation was offered that it may have something to do with the Three Fates.

After that, the PCs:

-got acquainted with Nigel, the Religious Fantastic. Apparently, "Religious Fantastics" are a movement from a distant part of the world that are a kind of combination between devout followers of G.O.D. and Soccer Hooligans, sharing the 'good news' of the religious life and viciously clubbing anyone who doesn't listen.

-got a bit lost in the deepest recesses of the Tangled Wood (while still on a meandering route to Highbay).  Apparently, as one of their new arrivals to the party proved, professional Dung-gatherers are not particularly qualified by their career to serve as wilderness guides.

-nevertheless reached the River of Gems, which proved rather disappointing as it had long since been mined dry of any gems.

-recalled that the reason they were going to Highbay (also known as the "City of Stoners") was that Night had to obtain a Violet Lotus Shrubbery for the King of Elfland, without which she could never recover the ridiculous amount of Spellburn she'd spent on Agility.  She was effectively derped up, bumping into trees almost constantly as they traveled.

-found that even Night's hearing had apparently been gimped, as she'd completely failed to hear the arrival of an extremely elderly dwarf knight, who had apparently been on a geas-induced for these last 200 years of his life.

-watched as the elderly dwarf, with what seemed to be his dying breath, bequeathed his bag of magic beans to Night, to be planted at the shores of the Furry Bay, and with strict instructions that they be used for good and not for self-serving purposes in spite of the 'great power' these beans were said to grant.

-Also watched as the elderly dwarf seemed to not quite be dead yet, for quite some time.  His lingering ruining what would otherwise have been an intensely dramatic final moment.

-Likewise, watched as the dwarf cursed himself for giving away the Extremely Powerful Beans Not to Be Misused to the first party-member he met, rather than to the Azure Wizard who would be far more likely not to misuse them.

-finally nodded off after concluding that the elderly dwarf wasn't likely to actually die quite yet; only to wake the next morning to find nothing left of him but dust and his armor.

-discovered, and proceeded to mostly ignore, the fact that the detect magic spell registered the beans as not being from this plane.

-realized that the Second Sight spell, cast by Clerics through the somatic component of shaking their tablet while asking a question, was really just a "Magic 8-ball" App.

-managed to get themselves ambushed by a gang of Centaur slavers with Australian accents, all of whom were named Bruce.

-were to be taken to be sold as slaves to Lord Dread, of Castle Dread, who everyone, even the Centaurs, agree is a total asshole.

-bided their time for the right moment to try to get free, which came along the next day when the Centaurs got into a fight with a passing patrol of mutants from the town of Focks (which is routinely mispronounced, much to its inhabitants chagrin).

-ran into some trouble with their escape attempt when the Centaurs scared off the mutant militiamen a lot faster than anticipated, and most of the PCs hadn't even managed to get free of their bonds yet.

-saw Night the elf make the ultimately extremely unfortunate decision of eating all the magic beans, in the hope that they would grant her immense cosmic power.


-watched Sandy and Bytharion get the living crap kicked out of them by the Centaurs, while Schul surrendered to them to avoid a similar beating.  However, Ack'Basha the Cleric saved the day by a very creative use of his Holy Sanctuary spell.

-Saw Night fly after the fleeing centaurs while the rest of the party was still freeing itself.  They did not see how when Night started to cast spells against the centaurs, she immediately started to mutate into a horrific derpy-fungus thing and fly off, no longer in control of her own body.

-decided to track the Centaurs first, and try finding Night later, not being aware of her horrific bean-related metamorphosis.

-plotted a careful night-time assault on the Centaurs, which immediately turned into a string of fumble and spell-misfire related disasters.  Suddenly Sandy couldn't manage to hit the broad-side of a barn, and Schul the rogue fell flat on his face in some centaur-droppings rather than skillfully backstab the person he was supposed to backstab.  Bytharion finally managed to save the day with his trademark gender-changing magic-missiles.

-decided to rest and recover from their fairly serious wounds that night, and put off searching for Night until the morning.  After all, how much difference could one more day make, right?

-woke up the next morning to find a 200-story tall Horrific Derpy-fungus thing emerging from the Furry Bay.

-Decided it was time to use G.O.D. to call up the Azure Wizards, since this was frankly beyond them.

-went with the entire High Council of the Azure Wizards to Highbay, where they found a mix of panic and business-as-usual, as about half of the population were apparently convinced that the colossal void-infected monstrosity that was slowly shambling toward their city was probably just a drug-induced hallucination.

-headed to the city offices, except for Schul who stopped off at the market to purchase a Violet Lotus Shrubbery.

-met once again with Chief City Officer Swanlee, who was pretty blase about the latest existential threat to his city, in spite of (or perhaps because of) his reputation for being the only stone-cold sober man in the whole town.

-learned to their dismay that their friend Bolt-O the conversation robot, who had last been seen accepting a bureaucratic position in the city government, was not in town, but had in fact been kidnapped by the Orc mercenary Chief Omnblarg on the last occasion that Lord Dread had tried to besiege Highbay.  Omnblarg had since parted company with Lord Dread and overran and conquered the town of Badbreath.

-decided that the best plan was the one proposed by Leandra of the Azure Order, which would be for the Azure Wizards (including Bytharion) to make a massive group ritual-casting to try to petrify the monstrosity, while the others protected the wizards around their circle.

-began the ritual and quickly found themselves accosted by a trio of incomprehensible terrors from the void, who could eat magical energy and looked a little bit like transparent ducks covered in tentacles.


-were about to start fighting these creatures, when the Derpy-fungus Kaiju only made things worse, by spitting out a toxic mist of hallucinogenic gas, instantly incapacitating half the party, including Sandy (their best fighter).

-watched in terror as the evil Tentacle-Ducks Man Was Not Meant to Know dug their tentacles into Leandra and sucked out her soul.

-were further horrified to find that ordinary weapons could not hurt the ducks.

-reached the limit of lovecraftian terror when the Derpy-fungus Kaiju shat out radioactive acid all over the bay area, likely ruining property values port-side.

-saw Ack'basha the cleric once more step up to almost save the day, blowing away most of the Cthulhu-Ducks with a particularly effective Turn Unholy.

-snatched victory from the jaws of failure when Schul the rogue, in an uncharacteristic display of valor, stepped up and managed to kill the last of the Cthulhu-ducks after borrowing the Hornet Mace from a drugged-out Sandy.

-breathed a sigh of relief as the Azure Wizards were then able to launch their spell, turning the Derpy-Fungus Kaiju into a gigantic statue, and about a kilometer of the now-poisoned bay into solid stone too, prompting City Officer Swanlee to note that this will require considerable and expensive infrastructure investment.


Sadly, if you haven't guessed by now, the monstrosity was none other than Night, transformed by the Dark One's evil beans into a horror, and now quite dead (although her possession of an Amulet of Protection from Death, though it did not do what she thought it would do, did turn out to allow her to live a relatively comfortable afterlife instead of having her memories washed away and being subject to an eternity of being poked with pitchforks).  The team also lost an erstwhile ally in the form of Leandra, the leader of the Azure Order. Next time, they'll probably be going to rescue Bolt-0, which should be fun.

RPGPundit

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(June 12, 2015)
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