The Doomed Turnip Kings Turn Up for the Doom of the Savage Kings (Session 1, 10/13/2020) (Road Crew game 8)

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The Doomed Turnip Kings Turn Up for the Doom of the Savage Kings (Session 1, 10/13/2020) (Road Crew game 8)

Post by Meadhelm » Sat Oct 17, 2020 5:50 pm

The adventurers left town shortly after the successful expedition to the Tower of the Black Pearl, some complaints regarding their unauthorized use of a local’s sailing vessel compelling them to make haste.

Traveling along the road, they acquired some new members of their band after standing up to some minor bandits on their travels.

The band of warriors had taken to the habit of traveling in 2 groups: an advance party and the remainder made of slower traveling noncombatants and convalescing members. The advance party was traveling to the town of Hirot, for no other reason than it was next town down the road.

As they neared the town, a large party of villagers appeared ahead on the foggy road. Deciding to observe a moment, the party discovered villagers were bringing one of their number bound and gagged to be sacrificed to the Hound of Hirot.

A Jarl and his thanes were there on horseback, overseeing the process. The party questioned the Jarl and offered to help, but the Jarl was standoffish and refused their help, suggesting if they wanted to help they could take the place of the sacrifice. The mob left back to town, Jarl and all (save for their sacrifice).

The heroes quickly freed the maiden and got more details about what had been happening in town. Every 3 days a name is drawn by lotto to be sacrificed to the hound, and whenever the sacrifice is interrupted the hound runs amok in town killing several more.

The maiden reluctantly agrees to remain as bait and was given a torch, as the party lay in wait to ambush the hound. The hound seemingly appeared out of the very fog itself and managed to surprise some of the party. The girl ran for her life just as the party attacked the beast! Kirk was downed by a mighty chomp of its ravenous jaws and other sustained serious wounds. The party’s priests, Cob and Lenard, managed to heal the worst injuries as Banyan and Durin harried the beast, before it finally disappeared into mist after receiving a certainly fatal blow.

Thinking the beast slain, the party sauntered into town, but in retelling the tale to the night watchman, they were informed this has happened before and the beast will certainly return.

The watchman lets them into the town and directs them to the Wolf Spear Inn. At the inn they are greeted warmly by the innkeeper, who is the father of the maiden, Morgan, whom they saved. Food, drinks, and lodging are given to the party in gratitude.

Drink flows freely through the crowd and the party sets talking with the dozen villagers also sheltering in the inn. Seeking rumors and information the party gets some leads, including overhearing a bard singing a tale of the Wolf Spear, a legendary weapon used by a Jarl long past. Questioning the bard they learn the general location of the Serpent Mound where the Jarl was buried.

The next day the party splits into two groups, the first one: Kirk, Banyan, and Durin questions an old witch in her hovel who was spinning fire into chainmail. She has what would help them: Shackles made from dead men’s hair, but her price is Kirk’s hand in marriage!

The second group: Lenard and Cob question the local priest and his two silent acolytes as they flagellate themselves. The priest shouts about sins and redemption, and upon learning that Cob and Lenard are priests of different faiths, he decries them as dark powers seeking to corrupt the peasantry and bring about their ruin and are generally kind of a dick.

Regrouping the party is undecided, should they head straight to the tomb? Wait and confront the hound in town tonight? Will Kirk agree to marriage to get the old widow’s hair shackles???

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Re: The Doomed Turnip Kings Turn Up for the Doom of the Savage Kings (Session 1, 10/13/2020) (Road Crew game 8)

Post by Mat Mobile » Sun Oct 18, 2020 9:22 am

I love following your adventures.

So if I understand correctly, your players went through Tower of the Black Pearl as a funnel and are now playing Doom of the Savage Kings as 1st level characters.

I'm curious about some things about the Meta Game. Was it obvious for each player what class each villager/peasant would become (other than demi-humans of course)? Did you help them out or they did it on their own between sessions?

From the story, I see that it's going well. Lots of Role-playing and investigation at first. And players are usually confused after the first session about what the next step should be. The Jarl always makes them really suspicious.

The first time I ran this adventure, the Chaotic Wizard tried to save Morgan by casting a spell... which went to well and they killed too many of the villagers (I forget the exact number... let's say about 5). :lol: It made for a really awkward welcome at the gates!

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Re: The Doomed Turnip Kings Turn Up for the Doom of the Savage Kings (Session 1, 10/13/2020) (Road Crew game 8)

Post by Meadhelm » Wed Oct 21, 2020 3:21 pm

Some of the characters came from Portal under the stars, and some from Accursed heart of the world ender (from my other group, the pirates that sided with the PCs). After that any PCs made were 1st level, I think. I think for expediency had them roll d25 to pick from my pregens and then level them up. Although I have in some sessions gave new players an option to either run 3 lvl 0's or make 2 level 1's and play one with the other as backup in case they die early.

I told the players their 0 level could level up in any class, and that for example their 0 level dwarven mushroom farmer, could be a human warrior, etc., the explanation in that case being that they were never a dwarf, just particularly stocky and people assumed they were a dwarf. Likewise a human 0 level could have level up as a halfing or elf, everyone else having just assumed they were just a young human, or willowy, or no one noticed their pointy ears or etc.

In early sessions of tower of the black pearl I had the players run 2 PCs (originally one was supposed to be backup, but had some people not show up to play and wanted there to be at least 6 characters. This gave a somewhat similar feel to the expendability of the characters, which I think is great to embolden them. Sometimes players can get too cautious especially with 1 character at 6 max hp and an AC 10 for example.

But even though I gave the option I think only 1 or 2 PC out of dozen plus survivors ever changed their race. Sometimes players were undecided about class but generally the party worked it out talking amongst themselves apart from asking what ability score was key for a priest, or similar.

I should also say that the characters were generated on purple sorcerer with 'tatterdemalian's heroes' option for stats, which made it more likely for them to have at least one good stat, although I think the highest XP character has nothing over an 11 and had like a 3 for luck until the end of tower of the black pearl.

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Re: The Doomed Turnip Kings Turn Up for the Doom of the Savage Kings (Session 1, 10/13/2020) (Road Crew game 8)

Post by Meadhelm » Mon Nov 02, 2020 10:12 pm

Savagely Seeking the Spear to Save the Selected Sacrifice! (10/27/2020)

Joined now by the rest of the band who just got into town this evening, the party passed the evening in the tavern hoping to intervene if the beast should strike and gather any more information. Kirk had decided he would not agree to marry the witch for her magical dead men’s hair shackles. After some drinking and one joke too many regarding this, he stalked off into the night.

Sure enough, before long shouts and screams from outside were heard. Rushing to the aid of two of the night guards of the small town, the beast was driven back into the mists from whence it came, but not before making an orphan of a young girl whose parents were eviscerated. Returning to the tavern with mixed cheers and mutterings, the party rested. The tavern keeper's daughter gladly took in the girl.

The next day it was announced that all members of the party were expected to add their names to the lotto to select the next sacrifice. The party decided to put the Jarl’s name on their slips of paper in place of their own. The name drawn however, was Cob! Banyan noticed a weasely urchin whispering to the rat faced seer of the Jarl’s before the slip of paper was drawn.

The band made plans to split up, part of the band would depart to wait for the beast in ambush, with Cob willingly going along for the sacrifice. Meanwhile the main party would head to the Serpent Mound and search the Tomb of Ulfheonar.

Arriving at the serpent mound, they were attacked at the entrance by a huge snake like water elemental. Calling upon his god, Lenard the cleric was able to drive away the spirit animating the creature.

Entering the tomb, Lenard’s luck did not hold as he fell into the spear laden pit trap, nearly receiving an in person audience with his god.
Drawn by the scent of blood, ghouls attacked the party in the pitch darkness as they were wondering how to retrieve the cleric.
Banyan and Durin deftly slew the pair of foul ghouls (with some aid from Zinlen), only to have python sized ghoul snakes burst from their chest!
These snake ghouls were more formidable, but as one was slain, the other was driven off by Lenard’s holy symbol as he caught back up with the party.

After tending to their wounds, it was decided to hunt down the last ghoul snake, who was quickly dispatched hiding in a room with a stone chest contains a mantle of bear hide, which Zinlen the elf instantly declared to be his.

Next a collapsed chamber was explored from which some few rays of daylight could be seen in the corner. Durin could faintly smelled some buried gold, but time was of the essence!

Reaching a large chamber with massive doors, During noticed they were load bearing and could not open. Lenard recalled his vision from before and the crawlspace was spotted. The crawlspace was narrow, forcing them to travel single file on hands and knees.

Zinlen the elf spotted a narrow vertical tunnel and climbed up it only to be met by another ghoul whose snake burst from its stomach nearly felling him in a single strike and wearing the corpse as armor!

Banyan tried to hit it with a thrown handaxe from below, but the spilling dirt in the shaft fouled his aim.
Zinsen was able to get in a good strike with his sword, but soon fell to the snake’s fangs and lay bleeding out.
Durin had ascended in the meantime, and was able to slay the ghoul snake with mighty blows from his sword and shield.
Banyan and Lenard rushed to Zinlen’s aid, and Lenard healed him just before he bled out.

They found themselves in the true Ulfehonar’s Tomb! Loot was quickly divided:
Durin took hold of the wolf spear
Banyan has the horn and the huge white wolf pelt
Zinlen took the bear pelt (from earlier)

Having achieved their goal, the only room remaining was identified to be the a false tomb, trapped and set for grave robbers.
Doubling back, it was decided to dig their way out from the collapsed room, rather than risk the spiked pit trap again.
As they emerged from the side of the Serpent Mound, they slapped each others backed and congratulated each other as they began their walk to Hirot.

From the shadows of the nearby wood, Iraco the Jarl’s huntsmen and six archers stepped out from the foliage to bar their path…

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Re: The Doomed Turnip Kings Turn Up for the Doom of the Savage Kings (Session 1, 10/13/2020) (Road Crew game 8)

Post by Meadhelm » Mon Nov 16, 2020 9:02 pm

Hounding the Hound of Hirot (11/10/2020)
Confronted by Iraco (the Jarl’s huntsmen) and his six hunters, who demanded they hand over the spear, the party had no choice but to fight their way out. It would have been a harder battle but Kirk had followed the huntsmen from town, having heard of their treachery and struck from hiding taking out one of the arches early in the battle.

As it stood, the huntsmen were no match for the party, and the last two huntsmen surrendered, and were set free after promises were extracted that they were never to return to Hirot. The battle was not without some cost however as the limits of Lenard’s favor with his god was stretched thin in healing their wounds from the battle.

Kirk informed them of the rest of the band waiting to ambush the hound at the sacrifice site, and volunteered to run back to town to purchase a pair of healing potions from the temple in town while the rest of them made haste to the sacrifice site. On his way, some glimmer of malice from his sword, ‘Whisker’ the blade of the dread pirate Savage Quenn, prompted him to slay the limping and wounded huntsmen as he came across them in the forest.

The party gathered at the sacrificial stone and waited the night, but the hound never appeared.
Other members of the band shared further stories they had heard of an old pagan spot deep in the marsh to the northeast where sacrifices were once made.

Returning to town, they heard tell of another attack in the village from the hound, and made haste to try to find the beast’s lair in the marsh.

In the marsh they came across several circles of skulls and soon realized they were being stalked by large pack of swamp jackals.

Pushing on, they eventually found a large sinkhole which exuded a palpable evil. Durin determined the drop to be at least 60 feet, and as Cob had only 20 feet of rope, the group decided to search for vines they could lash together to climb down.

Unfortunately the vines they were gathering grabbed back! As the group work to free themselves of the attacking vines which tried to drag them into the pit, the marsh jackals attacked!

As Durin and Banyan struggled to put down the jackals, Cob and Lenard pleas for divine aid began falter. Lenard and Kirk were both felled but Cob was able to execute a difficult maneuver which allowed him to heal Lenard with a potion, but unfortunately smashed the second one.

Lenard was able to heal Kirk before he bled out, but the party soon noticed a mist which had been rising out of the pit solidified into the form of the hound!

The hound was drawn by the dark pull of the Black Pearl to focus on Lenard, but after dealing out some grievous wounds it was pinned by Durin with the Spear of Ulfheonar. He handed the spear to Lenard who held the beast fast as Kirk struck it from behind. Banyan hacked and slashed the beast, and Durin beheaded the hound, its blood staining the axe permanently.

Eventually a search was made of the lair, which turned up gold jewelry worth 352 GP, a silver short sword, a bronze torque decorated with gold wire and a bronze buckler.

The party makes their way back to the gates of Hirot, with the hound’s severed head proof of their mettle.

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Re: The Doomed Turnip Kings Turn Up for the Doom of the Savage Kings (Session 1, 10/13/2020) (Road Crew game 8)

Post by Meadhelm » Mon Nov 30, 2020 11:11 pm

Heroes of Hirot Hunt the Heretofore Headman (11/24/2020)

The party returns to Hirot from the swamp to receive a true heroes welcome!
After the town throws a massive celebration in the town square, they rest up and sell off some of their loot and re-equip themselves.
While the others are shopping Lenard and Kirk notice two figures on horseback in the early morning, one of them heavily laden riding with haste from the Jarl’s longhouse and east out of town.

Deciding to confront the Jarl for his treachery, the party is joined by the elf named Mink as they go to see him. They are met instead by a roomful of thanes arguing at the long table. Falling silent they explain the Jarl and his sorcerer, Sylle Rue, have fled the town. Worried one of the heroes may seek to become the new Jarl, thane Helmark quickly speaks up suggesting that the party be recognized for their deeds.

In the town square, the Thane Helmark extolls the groups heroism, and presents them with a large sack of coin, as he declares that they have uncovered a plot of treason and sorcery on the part of the Jarl. He further explains that they have agreed to leave at dawn to hunt the villains down for a bounty.

The party purchases horses and gear with the new coin, and agreed to move on. Mink helped identify the tracks, and the party was examining a still warm extinguished campfire when they were attacked by Spider-eyed goblins!
During and Banyan made quick work slicing and dicing the fiends, as Kirk helped by backstabbing them. The goblins were vicious with their four clawed arms and all party members were bloodied.

As the final goblin fled, a loud crashing in the forest was growing closer from the east, terrifying the tethered horses, several of which broke free.
Calming or catching the horses to prepare to flee, the cause was sighted - a cyclops!

It tried to pulp on of the horses, but broke its club trying to do so.
Then Banyan shot it with his short bow, blinding it and causing it to stumble with a perfect hit, and then Cob managed to subdue the cyclops with a Command spell!

After replacing his eye with another from his sack, the cyclops saw the heavily armed party and bargained for its life, offering it huge spell book containing the mortal runic alphabet in exchange.

The party agreed but decided to nonetheless put some distance between themselves and the cyclops before resting.

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