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Old 03-28-2015, 09:46 AM   #51
Abe Sargent
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Catonsville, MD
As the winter gets very cold very quickly, a large ice bridges forms in the north. There is a giant island up north, Frosthaven, and that’s the home of thousands of frost giants.

2000 Frost Giants move across the ice to the mainland. They break into 20 raiding parties of 100 giants each, with about half moving south towards the halfling holds and the other half moving south east towards the edge of the Norwold territory, in a line for Alzar’s Barony.

They move 6 hexes every 7 days, so every week they move six hexes.

They began moving out from their island on the last few days of the end of fall. They crossed the hundreds of miles of ice, and then arrived at the mainland on the 10th day of this month. After 8 days of moving, an elf hold noticed them

On the 19th day of the month, Alzar receives a guest in his court – Claransa the Seer teleports into his hold at Evenarrow and lets him know about the oncoming frost giant onslaught. But they have some time. Alzar teleports to Barkal the Red to give his barbarians a warning a few weeks ahead of schedule.

The next day, Alzar decides to hit one band early, to slow them down. He scrys the front band moving southeast in his general direction and he teleports over to a spot a few miles away and he prepares a surprise.

Over the next few minutes he creates a nice sized army from the surrounding rock, ice, and air:

3 Earth Elementals (From 2x stones, and one spell)
2 Water Elemental (Ring, Spell)
1 Air Elemental (Censer)
1 Earth, Air, Water – all 16 HD double size (From Face of Xenous)
Invisible Stalker
Ebony Fly, Serpentine Owl
5 berserkers (from Horn of Valhalla)
2 Mordenkainen’s Faithful Shield-Maidens

He also has Aegis, the golem available pulled out of the Warp Marble, as a final bodyguard.

The frost giants enter range, and a few begin to grab nearby boulders to toss and others charge.
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Old 03-28-2015, 12:23 PM   #52
Abe Sargent
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Catonsville, MD
Battle has begun. Alzar will cast Time Stop, Polymorph Other, Domination, Animate Dead on the first dead Frost Giant to give him another ally, Power Word Kill, Power Word Stun, Hold Monster, Finger of Death. Meanwhile, his army will be below, moving in to smash and kill the first flank of troops moving in.

Random.org.

Alzar has slayed 34 of the frost giants, his army is destroyed, and covering his retreat with a Skull Trap that takes out 4 more giants and clears a path, Alzar and his golem move to retreat.

He cannot use the elemental summoning items, Horn, or figurines again for a week.

Alzar gains 76k

62 giants left in this band

Alzar levels up, but he’s in the middle of a campaign, so we’ll wait until later.

The next day, Alzar hits the band again, and again leads with the summoned creatures (Elementalsx2, Stalker, Shield-Maidens), uses Evard’s Black Tentacles to slow them down, and then drops Skulltrap from above on a flying carpet, and again launches the auto kill stuff, animated a dead one back to life to harass the team and more. He takes out 16 more giants.

The 46 giants left begin to pull back, and the next day, another 19 die, and they flee and they will run all the way back home. 100 giants removed from the raids.

It’s now the 22nd.

An elf hold in the far east was smashed by a giant group, Alzar teleports to the barbarians and will help them for a bit. The closest group is 150 miles away, and Alzar Mass Teleports a strike team over, himself at the head. Again, he launches the attack, and 13 giants die, and two barbarians do as well.

Alzar and the team will harass the group for two more days, taking out giants from the air with spells (Flying Carpet) or from the ground with summoned creatures, delaying spells like Tentacles, and Blastbones or Skulltrap, with the occasional Vampiric Touch regaining Alzar damage he takes from the occasional hit by a boulder or somesuch.

They have reduced this unit down to 31 giants, and they flee as well, and then Mass Teleports back and Barkar the Red reports to the rest of the group what they did.
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Old 03-28-2015, 12:38 PM   #53
Abe Sargent
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Over the next week, Alzar is the only major force getting in the way of the giants, this team heading back to take out a second strike force coming in his general direction. On the 26th, he launches another full on assault with his items back making a larger army, and then again finishes it off and forces them to flee.

On the 30th of this month, 9 strike teams on the west and 8 on the east have passed the marshes by the Landsplit River and those two lakes and are moving south into more civilized land.

Barkal the Red and Alzar agree to pull back and let the giants hit the first major Barony in their path on that flank – Morkheim, the one controlled by Alak Dool. Meanwhile, Sandralane moves some of her forces into Alzar’s Barony to support against an assault that crosses the Ljallenvals.
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Old 03-28-2015, 01:24 PM   #54
Abe Sargent
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Join Date: Dec 2001
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Month 1, Year Two: (January)

(We’ll do the dominion stuff later, post giants)

On the 3rd, Alzar’s strike team again uses his full items and hits the front giant group, and forewarned, they turn back more quickly.

On the 5th, a third group has routed.

The remaining 7 groups on the eastern flank hold up a few days and gather their forces, and then head out as one big force, 700 strong.

By the10th, two raiding parties on the western flank have arrived at the two hexes of Morkheim. Alak Dool didn’t emerge from his dominion to face them, but he won’t let them in, and himself a pair of apprentice wizards, and a variety of charmed creatures begin to attack, supplemented by his armed forces, and in a few days, both raiding parties are routed, turning the west flank into 7 groups as well.

On the 15th, the first giant party arrives at the northmost Halfling freehold – Port Hinly, and they begin assaulting it. The Great Bay is almost completely frozen.

By the 20th, Alzar hits the large 700 strong group and takes out 18 giants with his forces.

On the 23rd, the forces Alzar are fighting turn south about 30 miles from the Ljallenvals, apparently not really wanting to cross and then run into Alzar and his forces. By now they are down to 651 giants.

25th – The eastern army begins to cross the Great Bay

The 26th – the barony of Lalmetaure, in the forests south of Morkheim, the elf Baron Quillan has turned back and routed another of the giant raiding parties.

The 29th – The groups on the western flank move to create one army as well, and 425 giants are left in this one.

By the end of the month, the troop count is:

West Army – 425
East Army – 617
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Old 03-28-2015, 02:24 PM   #55
Abe Sargent
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Catonsville, MD
Month 2, Year 2:

2nd, the East Army arrives near Alpha. Alzar meets with King Ericall about defenses, and suggests against sallying out. This is a raid, not an invasion force. You just need to outlast them. When the ice starts melting, they’ll likely pull away.

Alzar uses his items and spells to assemble a large defensive sally, and Madeira and Claransa both help by raining down spells like Meteor Swarm, Fireball, Lightning Bolt, while Alzar kills a few here and there with stuff like Finger of Death and Power Word Kill. At the end of their barrage, they have killed 88 giants.

The giants begin to throw stones at the battlements.

3rd:

The Western Army is met by combined forces from County of Garette, Baronies of Westria, Hopeland, and the Free Plains, and they begin to push back the giant attack there.

Meanwhile, another assault by the wizards drops another 61 giants, and then King Ericall orders a counter attack and more than a thousand of soldiers pour forth. After a few hours of fierce fighting, they push through and win the day, and the giants retreat back to Frosthaven.

4th

The western flank is falling. Alzar teleports over and kills a few giants on their rear to turn them away from their force. The giants have to fight on two fronts. Soon enough, Sandralane and Madeira also teleport to the other two flanks and begin to drop spells of mass destruction or the occasional elemental ally. By the end of the day, the western flank is cleared and the giants here have fled.

The giant raids have ended on the 4th.


Alzar at level 20 –

He has gained a 6th and 9th level spell.

Back to the Barony Stuff:


Dominion Rolls for Month 1 and 2:

-5% for winter in Month 1, +15% in capital in month 2. Gain 2 families in Storn

For the new year we make a confidence check and…new confidence is 344. Same level.

We had the Holy Liturgy Holiday.

Alzar hires, in Month 2:

20 more heavy cavalry

1 Sheriff
1 Chaplain


The King assesses the performance of his various servants, and determines that Alzar and Claransa were particularly useful, and are to be given more domains.

Alzar has recently found out that there is an elf village in the wooded hex south-west and north-west of his territory, and the last hex unclaimed before you hit the Ljallenvals. So instead, Alzar asks for the island of Bergholm, and is given it:


Bergholm Island –

Although it spreads across via two hexes, it’s really the size of one full hex, and we’ll treat it as such. Heavily mountainous and with very few places to do stuff.

29 Families; 2 resources, 1 mineral, 1 vegetable – Copper mines and berries.

Just one village: Bergholm Villa – 26 families, they are on a river where it meets the Great Bay, and the place is elevated too. Form here they can reach both some copper mine and harvest the numerous berry bushes that grow all over.


We get a message late in Month 2 that King Ericall will be getting married, his bride-to-be will be arriving from Alphatia soon.
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Old 03-28-2015, 03:11 PM   #56
Abe Sargent
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Catonsville, MD
Month 3, Year 2:

We can use one week of labor in the end of the month as spring begins. But the snow is still around and we can’t work that week.

Dominion News – Bergholm is +20% growth, and the others just +5% each as Spring begins, -6 families in Storn as Frost Giants raid a few people.

A band of Frost Giants were left behind as the winter thawed, and a few made it into the Ljallenfals. They have begun to raid folks.

The most recent raids have them coming from nearby Storn. Alzar teleports over and begins to search. His tabi, Ak’Kadar finds some tracks, and Alzar follows them to the trail along a mountain and some rock hills. The terrain here climbs steeply, and there appear to be no signs of human habitation. Suddenly, the heavy footfalls shake the ground and gasping breathes come from rocks to the east. They draw closer. Alzar conjures an Elemental.

The4 giants round the bend with mouths hanging open in desperate gasps for breath, looks of crazed fear on their faces, and they look behind them furtively. The Earth Elemental is in their path.

Alzar’s axe is out too, uses his Zoster, and he flies down to challenge the fleeing giants.

Init – 3 vs 9. Alzar clashes and needs just a 2 to hit these dorks with axe and a 3 with his shield. He smashes the first one dead. But it was already wounded. The Elemental misses. The other three pause, and then lash out at Alzar. They miss. (Cloak of Displacement, as a reminder, is a cloak he now wears)

6 vs 3. They smash him once for 4d8 damage and roll and get…19 damage. He carves one three times for 16, 16, and 12 damage – 44 total damage 13 left. The Elemental punches and slays it. Two left.

Alzar 55/74

The remaining two giants begin to flee. Alzar casts Polymorph Other and turns one into a turtle. Then he casts Power Word Kill and drops the other (no save on that one)

6k XP
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Old 03-28-2015, 05:47 PM   #57
Abe Sargent
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Alzar and his unharmed Elemental follow the giants and there is a rocky trail winding north-west to the mouth of a cave, the orange light of a fire flickers warmly and the smell of roasting venison is strong. Laying motionless around the fire are the bodies of 6 more frost giants and more than 10 large wolves they had as pets and guards. Their faces are full of fear, and their weapons clenched They were killed by very powerful bashing attacks.

These attack could not have occurred less than 30 minutes ago, the fire is fresh, the venison perfectly cooked, and the wounds oozing blood, not fully frozen. There are a few sacks here with dishes, utensils, and then some with low amounts of coins (coppers, silvers, etc). Alzar will turn all of those over to Storn after this ends.

There is a large cave mouth that heads deeper into the cavern. Alzar casts Invisible Stalker and has it do a little scouting, with the tabi following behind. There are three hallways. One ends in a around 5 giant scorpions, one is empty, and the third has a large golem of brass guarding it and more behind it.

Forewarned, Alzar enters his OtherSpace and switches some items around.

His summoned creatures wipe out the scorpions without any problem, and there’s nothing in these back two rooms.

Alzar moves to a rough hallway, with a dull roar coming off the walls. Cool, moist breezes blow softly through the tunnel, and an echoing roar grows into a pounding thunder as Alzar approaches. The tunnel opens into a bubbling stream of water that runs 50 feet along the south wall of the tunnel, and then drops over the lip of a precipice. The tunnel opens into a large cavern, and the silhouette of a large, artificial figure made of bronze blocks the eerie light of the cavern and prevents anyone from going down to the cavern beyond.



Bronze Golem – AC 0, HD 20, HP 97, THAC0 – 2, 1 attack fist 3d10 damage +1d10 heat damage;

Deals 1d10 heat damage from its scaling hot “blood” inside the being. That fiery liquid spurts out when it takes damage to whoever hit it, or when it punches because it makes contact. Immune to heat, and requires a +2 magical weapon to hit.

Alzar pulls up the Talisman of the Golem. This will give him one chance to permanently control the golem. As long as he has the Talisman, he can control the golem for free. If it fails, it can’t be used again on that particular golem. If the golem dies, you can control another, you can also release the golem it has.

The golem just needs a 8 to make its save. Here we go….it rolls a 16. It begins to move forward, and the Elemental/Stalker move to block it and attack it.

Initiative. 7 vs 2. The Golem punches and smashes the Elemental for 14 damage and 5 more fire. Alzar’s Whistle of Golem Control is next. And….It rolls a 7 and is controlled for a while. Combat ends.
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Old 03-28-2015, 06:42 PM   #58
Abe Sargent
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Join Date: Dec 2001
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Alzar moves the Bronze Golem ahead and the chamber opens. The eerie glow of green phosphorescence lights this cavern. The mist from the plunging falls drifts through the cave and settles on the damages walls. On the back is the beginnings of some old, ruined structure, very old, with a door at the back. In a large pool at the bottom is a coalescing mixture of water and the oil and slime from various fungi.

There is a large, dragon looking creature here but it moves mechanically. This is a drolem, a golem designed to look like a dragon. Usually it uses dragon bones, much like a Bone Golem uses humanoid bones, and then layers on top with other, more defensive structures like iron or stone. But usally, it’s dragon scales themselves that are hardened to put overtop of the skeleton.

It takes almost a year to make a drolem, requires a wizard of at least 18th level of ability and at least 90,000 gp in materials. The materials are found only on Pandius.



This drolem – AC -3, HD 20, HP, 112, flies, ThACo 2, 2 claws, 1 bite for 2d6, 2d6, 1d20+10. 23000 XP if killed. Can also breathe – small poisonous cloud, save vs poison or die. Can only be hit by +2 weapons, immune to cold, acid, heat, and levels up to 4, and detects invisible.

Alzar has the Bronze Golem in front, and then the Stalker and Elemental behind by about 30 feet, and he’s behind those. He tries the Talisman of the Golem again. Maybe it will work this time on a more powerful golem…It rolls a….14. Ah well. Worth the try!

The Bronze Golem moves in, and the drolem moves to fight it. These aren’t smart and intelligent fighters, and the Stalker/Elemental is a tough duo to battle, plus the bronze golem too. (Random.org) the drolem finishes the golem, but is taken down by summoned creatures.
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Old 03-28-2015, 08:15 PM   #59
Abe Sargent
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Join Date: Dec 2001
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After it dies, Alzar grabs a few of the items left behind in case he wants to learn how to animate it later. He even takes a vial of the bronze golem’s liquid to look at later.

They head into the back and open a pair of doors. This is an old palace of some repute. This was apparently the home of Alinor, prince of Alphia.

There is an old tomb and library back her. Alzar casts Detect Magic, uses his Gem/Star and more to figure out what they have:

Rod of Victory
Scroll of Creation, Truth

Massive golden carved door, weight 20,000 coins, worth 20000 gp

Diary - Alinor, Prince of Alphia

Hundreds of books that are moldy, and unreadable line many shelves.

It seems that the Ljallenvals aren’t natural mountains, but were raised by Alinor with magic. He used ships and skycastles as attacking vessels in the air to conquer this area for Alphatia long ago.

Rod of Victory makes the user lucky in war. Gives the unit +25 bonus to War Machine or Battlesystem wargaming

Alzar spends some time loading up the moldy and faded books. He can’t read them now, but after using his Bookmend, he certainly can. He uses his OtherSpace to move them slowly, and carefully, and then after he loads them all, he then gathers the items he found.

Since Alzar now normally memorizes Enlarge, he reverses it to cast reduce on the door and drops it to a very small size, uses the Weightless Chest to store it, and heads back out afterwards. He will have the door used in his keep as they finish things up and put in doors in the next few months.


He heads back and hires some more folks for Bergholm:

1 Sherriff
2 Provost
2 Warden
Herald
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Old 03-28-2015, 08:43 PM   #60
Abe Sargent
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Catonsville, MD
Month 4, Year 2:

Keep - We roll a 62 and everything is fine (There is a 2 in three chance nothing happens each month). 4 more work weeks roll off and…just 10 more weeks left!

Dominion – Same as before - Bergholm is +20% growth, and the others just +5% each as Spring continues

Alzar has begun communication with the small elf-hold next to his land, and then, a small group of dwarves from an unknown dwarf-hold in the Ljallenvals arrive with a problem. A few weeks ago, some extremely large versions of creatures (called Gargantuas) broke into their lair, and then were unable to be forced back out again, due to the lack of many magical weapons among the dwarves. They have come to Alzar for aid, since he cleaned out the giants a few months ago.

They offer one of two payments – 100,000 gp in verite ingots for cleaning out their small home, or a “pledge of call” that would require them to assemble their forces, one time, to fight whomever Alzar tells them to, for 3 months. (Verite is a greenish metal, slighter harder than the alloy steel, and more malleable).

This dwarfhold, named Hammerhelm, is apparently the only dwarfhold in the mountain range, and it’s actually right next door to Evenarrow.

In particular, these creatures have taken the forge of power that is sacred to their clan, so Alzar needs to head in, and take them out, and free their stuff. Alzar decides to go with the “pledge of call” in case he wins.

This underground mining operation apparently holds slightly more than 2000 dwarves, and he didn’t even know!
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Old 03-28-2015, 09:28 PM   #61
Abe Sargent
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Two days later, Alzar and his dwarven escort arrive at the dwarfhold and they enter. They escort him past some homes and such, and to the Forgeroom. He has the dozen dwarves wait, and then begins to scout the room with his various supplies, such as the Ear Ring. Instead of light to inform people that he’s there, he’s using his Ioun Stone.

There is a large cavern here, but not large enough for the three gargantuan gargoyles at the end to come down. This is the first of the rooms in the Forgeroom area.

Gargantuan Gargoyle – 32 HD, AC1, THAC0 – 1, Hp 160, 137, 128, 4 attacks for 4d3, 4d3, 4d6, and 4d4, All of the normal defenses. (Immune to magical weapons, for one)

Dang. Those things are hugely nasty in size. Alzar steps back and conjures some elemental aid – 3 Earth Elementals from his spell and two stones. He also brings forth an Invisible Stalker to help aid them. This is not going to be easy. Alzar quaffs his potion of Invulnerably (he has 4.) He is immune ot physical attacks now.

He leads the front, with the elementals and Stalker flanked behind, keeping anybody from leaving, the foes move to attack him.

After a few rounds, the gargoyles have lost a member, realize they can’t hurt Alzar, and moved to attacking an elemental instead, and soon kill it, but a second gargoyle falls. Then the third dies. Alzar orders his group to move on. There is a collapsed wall on the eastern side the gargantuan came in through.

As he approaches, a gargantuan carrion crawler emerges and he destroys it easily enough, then orders his group into the recently dug tunnel (it looks like it was dug with spells like Dig and such, and quite recently.)

Next is a pair of gargantuan basilisks. This is a bit different, so Alzar backs up a bit and lets them fight the creatures that can be petrified. All they have is a weak bite, and while they kill the Stalker, they are both handled easily enough.

There is a large passage that opens in a big chamber, with what appears to be 12 gargantaun trolls, but there;’s just one with an odd mirror image effect, which Alzar sees through. A few rounds later that giant troll is taken out. The Forge of Power was brought here by the troll for guarding. There are no other items or anything else here, even after inspection by the Gem/Star.

The dwarves thank him, (He gains 62000 XP) and heads back out.

He needs about 75k before he levels up again.

He shakes the dwarves’ hands, they have their forge back, and he teleports back home.
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Old 03-28-2015, 10:20 PM   #62
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Join Date: Dec 2001
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Month 5, Year 2:

Keep – 44 rolled, 6 more man weeks left!

Dominion – There is a plague that hits the capital for -10% people. +10% in Bergholm Isle, and +5% in the other two hexes. The plague is cured by the chaplain.

There is a confidence check and the confidence drops to 321.

Nothing else happens.


Month 6, Year 2:

Keep? 36 rolled – 2 weeks left…

Dominion - +5% everywhere.



Alzar heads to Alpha to attend the wedding of King Ericall and Christina Marie Alanira, a 12th level wizard.

The Summer Solstice was chosen as the date for the wedding, and Alzar arrives 8 days prior. Feasting will begin tomorrow. The bride is 19 years old and trained under the auspices of the best colleges in Alphatia.

The other lords of Norwold are arriving as well. Since Alzar was increased to 3rd in the court order (after Duke Lernal and Count Essex), he will be third at the table for the opening feast. The King wants to make a good impression, and this should be the best of the feasts and holidays and celebrations that the young kingdom has yet had.
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Old 03-28-2015, 10:34 PM   #63
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All of the visiting nobles are put up in fine quarters in the royal palace. They are all quartered near each other too, so Alzar can head out and visit any of the others here.

At the first banquet, Duke Lernal is visibly rude and vulgar towards his brother and Norwold. Not a good sign. Alak Dool is pretty quiet, almost tamed. Alzar thinks he should have been stripped of his title, but he wasn’t. King Ericall is a bit weak in making decisions that matter. Alzar found him trying to assassinate the leader of a barbarian tribe outside of his realm, and for some reason, he’s still a Baron. That’s the wrong call, barring something like a Geas spell to ensure loyalty.


Already one failed plot by Thyatian spies was uncovered when a local servant in the Royal palace tried to put poison in the dessert.

On night two of the feast, an immense assortment of culinary delights is spread out on the tables, and dozens of lords and ladies are eating, sitting, and mingling. Suddenly the massive bronze doors are flung open. Four imposing figures, clad head to foot in black plate mail, stride into the room.

A stillness falls over the room and the sounds of eight heavy boots rings against the walls. As the figures approach the King, several royal guards leap for their weapons, and the King holds up his hands to stop them. He stands and calmly faces the intruders and demands to know why they are here. One advances and exclaims that they are here to honor the wedding of a king to a common tramp. They insult everyone else a few times, and demand battle at trial the next morning to prove them wrong. They leave.

The King asks for four champions to meet them in the morning. He gets many volunteers, and chooses:

Count Essex
Baron Alzar
Baron Acres
Baron Fharo

For this battle, layers may use any magical items they possess.

Alzar will be going in full bad-ass mode as a full on fighter:

AC -5 with Axe and Shield

Can’t cast magic.

He gets three attacks a turn with the Axe, Axe, Shield

His foe will get 5 attacks every two turns, two, then three, then two, then three.

They meet in the morning. Count Essex throttles his enemy.
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Old 03-28-2015, 10:47 PM   #64
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Alzar’s turn:


Alzar 74 HP, AC -5, THAC0 14, activated Zoster, +13 to hit with Axe, +13 damage with Axe.; +8 to hit and +11 to damage with Shield.

His foe:

Black Avenger - +3 long sword, specialization, 17 STR, AC -3 16 HP, THAC0 5.

Black Avenger needs to hit: 4 or more on a d20. He will hit for 1d8+6 damage.

Alzar needs to hit: 4 or more on a d20 for axe, 8 or more for shield. He will hit for 1d8+13 or 1d8+8 when he hits.

Here we go!

9 vs 4. The foe goes first and attacks twice 16 and 13. Hits for 23 damage. Alzar rolls and gets…13, 16, 6. Hits twice for…33 damage.


Alzar – 53/74
Black Avenger – 29/62

Initiative. 9 vs 2. The Black Avenger gets three attacks and rolls….7, 15, 17. Alzar takes 7, 5, 3 for…33 damage. Meanwhile Alzar attacks back and rolls….3, 9, 17. He hits twice for…30 damage. The Black Avenger falls (is knocked unconscious, this battle used attacks to subdue with the flat of the blade).

Two Avengers down. Alzar gains 4000 XP>

The 3rd Black Avenger is taken down by the 17th level fighter Acres and Fharo just blasts his opponent.

They win 4-0.
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Old 03-28-2015, 11:34 PM   #65
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During the feast that night, Christina is brought out from wedding prep to meet the nobility. Alzar introduces himself and they talk shop for a while. After seeing them together, the King asks Alzar to escort her to the town that evening, and he agrees to.

After the banquet, and once King Ericall leaves to do some further wedding preparations, Christina wants to head out to the dock district, with a lower reputation. Alzar asks Sandralane and Claransa to join him, but Claransa is already busy. The cleric joins him though.

They head out, and Christina wants to use potions of polymorphing she has to turn into old guys to check out the taverns. They agree, and turn head out to check out taverns and move. After a few minutes, a group of thieves, fighters, and a wizard move out to kidnap the queen-to-be.

Their wizard casts Power Word Stun on their target and she’s stunned. Their soldiers move in. Alzar casts Power Word Kill on their mage and she dies. Sandralane moves in front of Christina to body-block her, and keep away the 12 thieves/fighters as they move in and begin to attack,

Initiative. Alzar uses his Ring of Quick Action to ensure init winning. 3 vs 6, would have won anyway.
He casts Mass Domination. This will gain control of 2 HD per casting level – so up to 40 HD. His foes are all 9th level, so he can Dominate 4. They get saves, but at -4 for the spell (and -1 for his class). HE dominates….3 fighters and they turn and attack their allies. Sandralane maces a 4th for some damage. Some attack Sandralane or Alzar, and some attack the ones attacking them. Alzar takes 11 damage .

Alzar 63/74

2 vs 9. Alzar casts Mass Charm, with the same rules (can charm up to 40 HD, can charm monsters and persons, save gets -2 penalty, and no Wis bonus vs charm stuff either). 2 of 4 fighters fail their saves. They stop attacking. The other fighters, and Sandralane kill a figher. 4 thieves and 2 fighters are still attacking. They fail their morale and begin to break. As they flee, Alzar casts Time Stop and gets 2 free rounds.

He casts Black Tentacles at the legs of the thieves and fighters and then moves next to them. Time Stop ends, and the Tentacles grab at the folks, and then Alzar casts Finger of Death at a thief and he dies.

Init. 3 vs 1. They attack a few tentacles and Alzar, the only person in melee range, it hit once for 7 damage. Meanwhile Alzar Vampiric Touch and kills an adjunct thief. The others and the tentacles kill two more folks, and the last is dead next turn.

The party is killed or handled. The charmed ones surrender happily, and the dominated ones have no choice at all.

They find on the mage:

Ring of Regeneration
Wand of Fireballs – 12 charges
+1 dagger

Alzar gives the wand to Sandralane as payment for her assistance, and secures the other two for himself.

Sandralane dispels the Stun on Christina, and they return with their captured folks for the guards to interrogate.
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Old 03-29-2015, 12:20 AM   #66
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The next days pass quickly.

Naturally the day of the ceremony is a sunny day. Banners, candles, and other royal decoration bedeck the great hall of alpha. A collection of bards play music that sings of high celebrations and sober responsibility. A huge mirror at the end of the hall reflects an atmosphere of elegance. The 10 foot wide mirror towers 30 high over the hall. The king stands proudly at the altar and fidgets in nervousness. A smile begins to dance across his face as the bride is exotic silks from far flung places emerges, and takes the king’s arm as she arrives.

The ceremony is short, and now Queen Christina and the King embrace in a broad hug.

Suddenly, a shadow falls over the room, thunder can be felt in the distance, the great mirror fogs up, and then the face of an aged hag or crone can be seen. Her wrinkled visage breaks into a grin, and he wishes everyone a good afternoon.

“Enjoy your celebration while you can, my king! Storm clouds are gathering on the horizon, darker than any you’ve known. If you and yours are alive after the passing of another summer, then you may be happy. Until then, sleep lightly.”

Her face fades, and the image, darkness, and thunder lift.

The following day, Alzar sends some folks he hired during this week back to the Barony for the Stronghold:


4 Bailiffs – 80 gp
Chamberlain – 200 gp
Senechal – 200 gp

He begins to lay out the walls and defensive formations around the village. We can start that project next month, if everything goes well.
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Old 03-29-2015, 12:50 AM   #67
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Month 7, Year 2:

Work is done. The keep opens, and Alzar has a one-day feast to celebrate it!

Alzar wants to begin with the normal defensive fortifications, but he can’t. We don’t have the money.

So instead:

For a total of – 174104 gp; 12653 man weeks base costs.

335150 Gp, and 24357 man weeks:

468 workers need to be hired. Once again, Alzar’s work will drop the time to build it by 75%.

Alzar sells a few more magic items, and converts the gems to gold (and loses a bit of money doing so.)

He pays the gold to begin the project to build the walls, defenses, and such around the wharf and docks.

37 weeks left on wharf project.


Dominion Rolls: +10% in Bergholm, +10% in capital, +5% elsewhere, -5 families in capital though as some leave and head home post-project.


A pair of Thyatian spies were outed by loyal locals.


Alzar casts a spell to give himself a familiar again and uses Alzar’s Familiar and gets…


Azzil, Imp

AC 2, HP 14, Save As: Level 7
THAC0 – 19; 1d4 + poison or die
Lawful Evil, INT Average
Flight class A, 18
25% Magic Resistance
Can only be hit by silver or magical items

Can polymorph at will into a raven or giant rat. Can turn invisible, detect good, magic, at will. Has infravision. Regenerate one hp/rnd. If within 1 mile, master gains infravision, regeneration and 25% magic resistance. User’s caster level increased by one. If not in 1 mile, caster level decreased by one. Immune to cold, fire, electricity. Can communicate telepathically with Alzar. Once/day can cast Suggestion. Now, if Azzil dies, Alzar is drained of two levels like an Energy Drain.

Azzil wants to be the leader of this relationship, and views Alzar as the tool and him as the master, but in reality, Azzil knows that it’s not nearly as powerful as Alzar can be. The devils allowed Alzar to take one of their Imps as a recognition of the work he’s done against demons.

Imps are the Ferrari of familiars. There is virtually no familiar that is as useful as an imp. Auto kills no matter the level with poison, they grant MR 25%, regen, and infravison and +1 caster level. They can invisible, polymorph, detect at will. They are the best and most agile of flyers. Now sure, Azzil is a bit independent, and will collect its own treasure and hide it away from bad guys. But it’s good.

Alzar is at the level where he can get really strong familiars. Azzil will be used to turn invisible and into a raven to hide itself as an imp when that’s not the diplomatic play.



Post Imp, Alzar meets with the local delegates from the Elf-hold next to him and comes to a variety of agreements with them. If he takes their area as part of his barony, they will not stop him, or oust him or anything like that. But they owe him no fealty. They won’t pay him taxes or production, and he won’t build up their area either. They have around 120 elves or so in the trees of a forest in the central north section of the hex.
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Old 03-29-2015, 01:13 AM   #68
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Month 8, Year 2;

Weather delays only allow 2 weeks of work to get done. 35 weeks left.

We have a holiday for the Mid-Summer Convocation – 10% of income that month

Dominion - +10% Island, +5% elsewhere;

It’s all quiet.


Month 9, Year 2;

31 Weeks left (Rolled an 08)

Dominion – After apparently working the island, we get both a large +20% population boom in the island and +3 families there too. +5% elsewhere.

We get another spy revealed (There are none left, btw)

Alzar hires:

Level 8 fighter to be Castellan, 2000 gp

The Castellan is in charge of the defenses in the stronghold, particularly when Alzar is not around.

In the last few days of the month, Alzar receives an odd dream about a black stone on top of a large hill, far away, where power and destiny await


Month 10, Year 2:


27 Weeks left (rolls a 51)

Dominion - +10% everywhere. Nice bonus!


Twice more Alzar receives similar dreams. He does some investigating and finds that there is a similar rock and hill about 300 miles to the north-north-west. There are no civilizations anywhere nearby. Alzar decides to head up to the rock, flying on his Carpet, and heading over to investigate.


Two days later he arrives at the black rock on the hill. His new familiar, Azzil, spends some time invisibly scouting around. There is a tunnel here at the base of the rock, and it’s pretty big. Alzar scouts around, lands, and then conjures an Earth and Stalker before moving in.

Alzar suddenly is gently captured and drops down to the ground in a large central chamber. He can’t move. Lights ignite and reveal five thrones equidistant around the chamber, with five different aged women, crones, on them.
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Old 03-29-2015, 01:40 AM   #69
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They announce that normally, all five of them would attack a large group to ensure that the person chosen is strong enough for the task. And also because its fun! However, since there is just one person there, they decide to send out one crone. Each crone serves one of the five spheres.

The sphere of Thought, who represents good and rogues generally, is ready. The crone, a high level cleric steps forward, and battle commences, Alzar is released.

Initiative!

9 vs 6. The Crone uses Anti-Magic shell from a Ring of Spell Storing. Alzar orders the Imp, Stalker and Elemental in to engage in melee instead. It won’t matter too much, summoned creatures can’t cross the Shell. It also can’t be dispelled via a simple Dispel Magic. Instead Alzar drops the Warp Marble and releases the golem, which can punch and moves to melee range.

Init – 6 vs 8. Alzar grabs the axe and shield and strikes. The axe will count as a non-magical axe, but the Bright Barrier is immune (it’s an artifact). Alzar swings and hits three times for…(No magical bonuses against it, but I rolled 15, 14, and 10). 3, 4, 3 for 7, 8 and 6 damage – 21 total. (Effects such as magical girdle, and such are turned off when attacking across the threshold). The golem punches and…rolls a 5 and misses. Alzar takes a war club to the side for 11 damage.


Alzar 63/74

Init 4 vs 5. Alzar hits once for 8 damage and the golem smashes it for 14. That drops her to 10% of her hp and she concedes.

The crones concede defeat to him.

Alzar gains 8k

(We only need 7k more to level up to level 21)

The crones offer important information that they have gained from their mirror. The balance in Norwold is getting out of alignment between the five spheres, and they want to bring it back. There is too much entropy right now. They have a unique mirror that allows them to see and scry anywhere, but also to appear and communicate in mirrors.

There is an invasion planned for Norwold. And…it’s coming soon. They bring Alzar to a mirror and reveal a pair of fleets sailing from Thyatis. Several of the baronies that supported King Ericall are switching sides…

Actually…
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Old 03-29-2015, 02:28 AM   #70
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The first fleet has landed and it drops off The Thyatis Advance Force has arrived at Landfall to support it. Landfall has joined the side of the Thyatians. Two other baronies join them, with Alak Dool’s being no surprise. A Thyatian Expedionary force moves in and lands about 150 miles south of the Barony of Moonland, Sandralane’s holding, and then begins to attack the adjacent Barony of Havkulle, run by Baron Rutger Dag.

Meanwhile, Longtooth’s domain, the Barony of Latela, is attacking out of nowhere Barony of Ublaat-nor, run by Broghan of the Steppes. Alak Dool is attacking the elven domain of Lalmetaure, and Max’s Barony of Solvhavne is attacking Glumicagora (Barony of). Ruler: Claransa the Seer. They are trying to hit all of the free baronies between Ocansend up the coast. Everybody but the inland and small Two Lakes Vale and Moonland aren’t in the immediate line of fire, but Moonland certainly will be, and then Alzar’s land probably next.

Alzar pulls away from the mirror, ready to give news about the coming invasion, but he is confused. He was not watching what will be, but what was happening. The vision took too long to participate, and it’s month 2, year 3 already.

Alzar teleports back to his dominion to find his army has already been assembled, and he moves out.
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Old 03-29-2015, 02:38 AM   #71
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Armies:


Alphatian Forces –

Royal Army of Norwold – 4000 troops, 92 Battle Rating (BR)
Queen’s Guard – 500 troops, all cavalry, BR 135
King’s Militia – 5000 peasants, BR 32
Regent Pass Garrison – 500, all archers, BR117

Sir Ernest’s Force – 500 troops, 79 BR
Rutgar Dag’s Force – 500, 85 BR
Allisa – 800, 92
Essex – 600, 87 BR
Quillan – 200 elves, 122 BR
The other 8 Baronies have 500, and between 70 and 85 BR

Thyatian –

Thyatian Advance Force – 3000 troops, 77 BR
Thyatian Expeditionary Force – 10000 troops, includes 500 mages, 85 BR
Alak Dool’s Misions – 2000 orcs, bugbears, trolls, 74 BR
Longtooth’s Legion – 500, 76 BR
Army of Max I – 800, 113 BR
Landfall Lernal – 2000, 48 BR


Others -


Alzar – 400 troops, 129 BR (Base 84, Troop Class – Good, gives a 9 BFR and we add it it back in as few times for a 129 rating)

Barbarians – 3000 troops, 68 br
Dwarves of the Mountain Clan – 1000 troops, 115 BR

We will not be bringing in the dwarves right now, that’s a useful deus ex machina or emergency reserve in case we need it later


Fharo has not assembled his men over at the Barony of Two Lakes Vale for either side.


That gives us these early numbers:

Alphatia – 16,100 troops
Thyatis – 18300 troops

Plus, the Alphatian forces include the 5000 weak peasants. Almost all of the Thyatian forces are on the coast. So they have the ease of attacking a weakened defense.
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Old 03-29-2015, 02:54 AM   #72
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Alzar teleports other a diplomat to summon the Red to attack the Barony of Markheim while Alak Dool is not there, in order to relieve that flank.



Alzar teleports over to Alpha, and the King and Queen and their forces have assembled. Alzar advises him to move east via his navy, since they are not in the Great Bay, , his people control the entrance, and The King begins to load up and move his force east to assist in the battle.


Day 19 – Alzar’s army crosses that little straight and arrives on the north-most end. After checking things around, Alzar begins to march south to support Sandralane’s Baronial Forces.

Day 22 -Quillins elves have lost, and their Barony has been captured by Alak Dool

Day 24 – The combined Thyatian/Landfall army has arrived at Geoffrey of Heldann’s dominion and begun to fight for it.

Day 26 – Alzar has arrived and combined his forces with Sandralane.

Day 27 – The barbarians arrive at Markheim, and their garrison just has 200 people (10% of the normal force) and is overwhelmed and will fall in two days. Haukville falls. The Thyatian Expeditionary force of 10000 begins to march north
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Old 03-29-2015, 03:16 AM   #73
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MONTH 3

Day 1 – The King has landed at Sandralane’s Barony and will combine with Alzar and her forces and move south.

Day 2 - Geoffrey of Heldann falls.

On Day 3 of the 3rd month of the 3rd year, the following forces entered battle:


Alzar’s Force –
Sandralane’s Force
King Ericall’s Force

Vs

The Thyatian Expeditionary Force –

The Thyatians must break up their army into smaller units, and they break into 1500, 1500 and 7000.

The highest BR selects their opponent first. Alzar takes a 1500 large army.

The next highest is the King. He takes the 7000 strong one

Sandralane gets the 1500 strong one

Results of the day”

Sandralane has a 77 BR and 500 troops

Her foe has 1500 troops and a BR of 85

Here are the rules:

Troop ratio 3:1 for Thyatis gives them +45
Morale - +10 to Sandralane for in dominion of their liege
Environment – None
Terrain - +10 for defending to Sandralane, +20 for defending in hills
Immunities – None
Fatigue – None

Total changes to numbers – Thyatis – 130, Sandralane – 117

Now, you just roll d100 for each player. Thyatis adds 13 to their result. Compare them. Who won and by how much?

Thyatis rolls…99 +13. Dang. 42 for Sandralane. Thyatis won by a difference for 70.

Thyatis loses 30% of their troops, Sandralane 60%, Thyatis is moderately fatigued, Sandralane seriously, and retreats considerably.

Meanwhile, The King and Emperor forces fight.

7000 vs 4000 is just a +15 to Thyatis. +30 to Norwold for defending, but not for fighting in their dominion. So total is… Norwold – 122 and Thyatis is 100. Roll…84 +22 vs….73. So, the result is +33 for Norwold…

The King wins, Norwold loses 20%, Thyatis 40% and moderate vs seriously fatigued as well. Both forces retreated from the field and neither holds it.

Alzar has 400 vs 1500, so +45 to Thyatis. Alzar gets +35 for magic items (banner and Rod of Victory) and +30 for defending. Thyatis has 130 and Alzar has 194. So Alzar adds 64 to his number. He rolls 51. He foes roll…24. Alzar wins by 92. Results. 0% loses for Alzar and not fatigued and hold the field. The enemy lost 30% and is routed and flees. The force is gone.

Alzar and Thyatis both had flanks that won, and held their ground, now they have to fight,


Alzar has no fatigue, there is no defender bonus this time. Alzar has 164 BR. His foe has lost 30% of 1500 troops, or 450 troops, and drops their ratio down to +30 bonus. They are moderately fatigued and get -10. Result is 105. Alzar gets +59. Alzar rolls 49, and his foe rolls. 54. Result is +55 for Alzar…

Alzar’s force loses 20%, the foe 50%, and Alzar holds the field, is moderately fatigued, and they lost 50% and are seriously fatigued.

Results:

They lost 1500 army to Alzar’s force, then are down to 525 in the army that broke Sandralane. Meanwhile they are down to 4200 in the other army, so post battle, Thyatis loses and has to retreat, and their force dropped from 10k to 4,725

Meanwhile Alzar is down to 320
Sandralane down to 200
King Ericall down to 3200
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Old 03-29-2015, 03:42 AM   #74
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Now, because they won, half of the losses are recoverable and heal-able. So after a week of healing, Alzar gets 40 back, Sandralane gets 150 back and the King 400 back.

Alzar tells the King to push forward now. We need to take them down now while they are reeling. The plan is to eave Sandralane behind to get her 150, the Kings 400, and Alzar’s 40 back to help with defending. Meanwhile, their forces, fresh from wins, will march towards the retreating TEF.



Day 4 – With the same speed, the only way to catch them would be to force march, but with good troops that would have a 1 in 6 chance of failure, a 2 in 6 chance of working and a 3 in 6 chance of working and tiring their people.

Alzar decides to try something else. Alzar memorizes a special set of spells for use against his foes en masse. He teleports in front of his enemies and drops some spells to slow them down, like Skulltrap and Blastbones on the flanks, then summons every creature, uses his Stones, Censor, Ring, Mask, Horn of Valhalla, and more, and then sends the force against them. Their surviving mages use some low level magic like Magic Missile to hit some creatures at range.

Meanwhile, Alzar begins to cast some nasty spells, like Mass Charm, Chaos, Mass Domination, and such. He is forcing the front lines to deal with his force, and he begins to take some damage from mages and others. He animates a bunch of corpses to keep the fight and pressure going and then drops Black Tentacles. Eventually he flies away, but he killed and slowed down their force considerably. Seeing the army getting closer and closer they stop fleeing, and accept the inevitable, and close ranks and set up.


The Thyatian split their force into 1000 and 3750

Alzar chooses the smaller, and King Ericall gest the larger:


New Numbers –

Alzar gets his 154 (-10 for fatigue) and then adds 20 for heroic actions on this day. 174 total
His foe gets 3-1 odds, and is the defender on a road. +10 for that. And it seriously fatigued, so -20. 105 total. Alzar gets 69 diff.

30 vs 49. Alzar wins by 50

0% loss to 30% for Thyatians they are fatigued, he is not further fatigued. He holds the field.


Meanwhile….King Ericall has 3200 vs 3750 for them . They get -20 for fatigue, he gets -10 for fatigue, they get +10 for defending. Ericall also gets +10 for having beaten these guys. 103 vs 75. Here we go…60 vs 38. 49 result. Ericall wins the same as Alzar did – 0 to 30%, no additional fatigue, hold ground.

Today, Thyatis lost another 30% of their forces and are down to 3,200

And they didn’t lose any other than a few wounded they immediately patch up.
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Old 03-29-2015, 04:00 AM   #75
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In two days, this war has completely changed in character. It went from bad numbers to pretty good ones. Thyatis is bringing the Landfall/Initial Force up the coast to link up with others and this force. King Ericall and Alzar will head back and set up in Sandralane’s defending territory again. They can make this the major battlefield again. The Queen’s guard is sailing over.

Day 6 – Markheim has fallen to the barbarians. Alzar teleports over and discusses battle plans with them. They will defend against the expected counterattack from Alak Dool, who still has 1500 troops of his

Day 8 – Alak Dool arrives back in Markheim. Alzar and Alak have a bit of a mage’s duel that results in little to either, but Alak Dool lost 60 or so of his troops in the exchange.

Day 9 – The wounded forces from the battle in Sandralane are now mostly healed.

Day 10 – Battle has begun in Markheim.

Let’s roll:

Alak Dool is outnumbered 1.5-1 - +15 for barbarians
Barbarians are defenders and defending a city +30 for barbarians
Alak is in his dominion - +10 for Alak Dool
Unknown to them, Alzar is there with his magic items, the Banner and Rod and will pop out and help = #5 more.

Barbarians are normally 68 and get to 113. Alak Dool gets to 84. Roll some dice!

24 for barbarians vs 43 for Alak Dool for….+45 diff, victory to barbarians.

0% for winner, -30% for losers, no tired on barbarians but tired for Alak Dool

Alak Dool’s forces are down to 950. Alzar teleports back.
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Old 03-29-2015, 04:37 AM   #76
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Day 12 – Forces from the Count Essex arrive and begin to recapture Quillan’s territory.

Day 15 – Two more armies join the Norwold forces in Sandralane’s Barony.

Day 18 – The final gasp of this attack, the combined forces of the Expeditionary Force, Advance Force, and Landfall meet up with two other two baronies here after they secure their targets, and move to Sandralane’s Barony. They will arrive in 5 days.

Day 23 – battle begins

Armies:


Thyatian Advance Force – 3000 troops, 77 BR
Thyatian Expeditionary Force – 3200 troops, includes some mages, 85 BR
Longtooth’s Legion – 420, 76 BR
Army of Max I – 650, 113 BR
Landfall Lernal – 2000, 48 BR

Vs

Royal Army of Norwold – 3600 troops, 92 Battle Rating (BR)
Queen’s Guard – 500 troops, all cavalry, BR 135
Alzar – 360 troops, 129 BR
Sandralane – 77 BR, 350 troops
Douglass, 81 BR, 500 Troops
Acres, 78 BR, 500 troops


They split the TEF in order to make 6 armies.

He first army chooses

Queen’s Guard selections Army of Max I
Alzar decides to take a different tactic and grab the 2000 strong Landfall army, Not what you would normally expect, ceding 7:1 odds, but there’s a method to his madness. He wants to give them a huge numerical loss.
Royal Army takes on the TAF.
1st TEF, 1600 big, takes on Douglass
2nd TEF, 1600 big takes on Acres
Longtooth vs Sandralane

Bonuses – all defenders get +30, Sandralane gets an additional +10 for their dominion.

In addition, nobody is fatigued anymore.

Let’s make some rolls…

Queen’s Guard took on the best army on the other side, and…37 vs 62. Win by 27. 10% to 30% losses, not fatigued to moderately fatigued, you hold the field.

Alzar is next. He cedes +80 to his foe. He gets +35, +30, and 10 for troop class differential. Total? 204 vs 128. Here we go….93 vs 68. Total victory by 102. Result? Alzar lost 20% of his forces, they lost 70%, and are routed too. Boom!

Royal Army vs TAF – 122 vs 77…23 vs 76. Uh oh…..lost by 8. Result? 0% to 10%. TAF holds, Royal Army loses 10% and retreats, no one is tired.

1st TEF vs Douglass – 3:1 odds gives +45 and then +30 to defender and then 130 vs 111….94 vs 53. Result….win by 22 for Douglass. 10% vs 20% losses and moderate fatigue on Thyatian.

2nd TEF gets +45 vs +30 and then 130 to 108…..31 vs 02. 51 win by Thyatians – 20% to 50% losses and moderate vs seriously fatigue.

Longtooth vs Sandralane. 117 for Sandra. 76 for Longtooth….77 vs 54. 64 victory so….30% to 60%. Longtooh flees badly. Moderate vs serious fatigue

Who held the field?

Alzar, Queen s Guard, Sandralane, Douglass

Vs

2nd TEF
TAF

Next time to choose. They have to spilt off two more armies, and TAF splits and TEF splits into 670 in each half.

Q Guard selects TEF
Alzar selects TEF
TAF vs Douglass
TAF vs Sandralane

Reverse order!


No defense bonuses. Sandralane is tired, TAF is not. Sandralane gets +10. 87 vs 77. 66 vs…62. Sandralaine wins by 6.

Result – 0 to 10%, no changes in fatigure, TAF retreats

Douglass vs TAF – No fatigure, no defender, 77 vs 81. Here we go…..69 vs…94. Lost by 20. 10% to %20. Douglass now moderately tired. TAF keep the battlefield.

Alzar gets +10 for beating TEF before, +10 for routing some today, no outnumbered, they are moderately fatigued

184 Alzar vs 75. 36 vs 53. Win by 92. Result? 0% for Alzar, 30% and routed for Thyatis. No tired.

Meanwhile, Q Guard has 135 foe is moderately fatigued. Vs 75….32 vs 60. Win by 32. 20% to 40% and moderate tired for Q Guard.

Result…

Alzar, Q Guard, Sandralane, all still there.

TAF not.

Alzar orders Sandralaine to hold back. The TAF is forced to split into two units as Alzar and the Q Guard move in and both rout their foes.

The result?

TAF is routed and has just 750 which were not routed in losses.
Longtooth lost 60% of its force
Landfall routed and lost 70%
TEF is partially routed, and has 732 forces left retreating
Max I – 30% losses


The massive losses meted out today have ended the war, and peace is sued for soon thereafter.
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Old 03-29-2015, 05:05 AM   #77
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Dominion while Alzar was away:


Alzar gets 100k in XP for battles and tax income.

We did 2 more weeks of work – 25 weeks left

Paid for some vacations. Lost some folks to cold. Wartime caused the growths to slow down.

Post War of the Crown, immigration to Norwold is going to take off. People all over see it as the place to forge their destiny. Soon there will be more people arriving to set up baronies and such.

Meanwhile, Alzar is promoted to Count, and given another hex as a thanks for his routing of three armies and helping to win the battle, and for bringing in the barbarians that took Alak Dool’s Barony from it.

Alzar takes the forested hex with the elf-hold to his west next to Storn and Evenarrow.


Hex #4 – 56 families, 1 good – Stone, this heavy forested hex is next to the Ljallenvals and has an elf-hold of 122 elves living here too.

Village – Rostock – 49 families, they have a small quarry here they use to harvest stone and rocks of quality and send them elsewhere. 3 resource GP

Monthly Income – Standard Income - 560 gp/month
Tax Income – 56 gp/month
Resource Income – 168/month
Total – 784/month (x14 multiplier)


Alzar hires:

1 Sherriff
1 Warden
2 Provost
1 Magistrate
1 Reeve

The Reeve collects taxes and keeps records or populations and stuff – like a censor and tax collector.


Alzar at level 21:

He gets an extra level 7 and 8 magic spells and an extra HP

Total XP: 4,218,085 (Level 22 at 4,500,000)
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Old 03-29-2015, 06:39 AM   #78
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By the end of March, year 3, here is the Barony:


The County of the Mighty

Ruler – Count Alzar

Hex #1 – Villages – Evenarrow - 211 families – On the southern coast of the little jutting peninsula, this village fishes south in the Great Bay and the entrance there brings in some nice saltwater fish. With a small set of docks, Alzar will be expanding Evenarrow into the capital of his County. It’s in the perfect place. The rest of the Hex is really small villages here and there or individual shepherds and there is large area, near the mountains on the western part of the hex that has Cassiterite deposits that can be opened to mine.

Details – 242 families
7 resource gp

Monthly Income – Standard Income - 720 gp/month
Tax Income – 72 gp/month
Resource Income – 504/month
Total – 4363/month (x18 multiplier)

Hex #2 – North of Evenarrow is this highly populated hex, southeast of the mountains, and with some amount on the Alphatian Sea. Forest and some hills.

Villages – Storn – 167 families, inland, center of the hex, they grow grapes on the hills here.
Riverton – 114 families, On a small river from the mountains to the sea, shepherds

Details – 407 families

Monthly Income - Standard Income - 890 gp/month
Tax Income – 89 gp/month
Resource Income – 267/month
Total – 5698/month (x14 multiplier)

Alzar will be building up Storn here as well, later on.

Hex #3 – East of Evenarrow and Storn, and flanked by the coast, this hex is the last full hex in the area in the waters. Lead has been mined before just south of Farhome and there’s open mines there ready to be used, if they are cleaned out and reinforced.

Villages - Augustia – 114 families, on the northern coast, fish the Alphatian Sea
Farhome – 42 families, grapes, on hills by western edge of hex
Asantia – 64 families, farmers in southern coast of hex.

Details – 241 families


Monthly Income - Standard Income - 540 gp/month
Tax Income – 54 gp/month
Resource Income – 378/month
Total –4336/month (x18 multiplier)



Hex #4 – 56 families, 1 good – Stone, this heavy forested hex is next to the Ljallenvals and has an elf-hold of 122 elves living here too.

Village – Rostock – 49 families, they have a small quarry here they use to harvest stone and rocks of quality and send them elsewhere. 3 resource GP

Monthly Income – Standard Income - 560 gp/month
Tax Income – 56 gp/month
Resource Income – 168/month
Total – 784/month (x14 multiplier)
Bergholm Island –

Although it spreads across via two hexes, it’s really the size of one full hex, and we’ll treat it as such. Heavily mountainous and with very few places to do stuff.

108 Families; 2 resources, 1 mineral, 1 vegetable – Copper mines and berries.

Just one village: Bergholm Villa – 90 families, they are on a river where it meets the Great Bay, and the place is elevated too. Form here they can reach both some copper mine and harvest the numerous berry bushes that grow all over.

Monthly Income - Standard Income - 290 gp/month
Tax Income – 29 gp/month
Resource Income – 116/month
Total –1620/month (x15 multiplier)



EXPENSES – 9760 + Tithe, Taxes

20% taxes to King Ericall (Not paid for first two years)
10% Tithe to local temple (Not paid for three months)
Military – 2790
County Staff - 2360
Specialist Staff – 2050
Stronghold Staff - 2560
Taxes to Ericall – 20%
Tithe to Matter Temple – 10%

Treasury - 61,145

Holidays:

Month 8 - Mid-Summer Convocation – 10% of income that month
Month 10 - Harvest Festival - 15% of income that month
Month 1 - Year’s End Divine Liturgy – 5% of income that month

County Staff –

Chaplain – 500 gp
2 Magistrate – 400 gp
5 Sheriff – 500 gp
14 Provost – 280 gp
9 Warden – 180 gp
Reeve – 500 gp

Specialist Staff:

Steward – 1000 gp
Engineer – 750 gp
Herald – 300 gp

Stronghold Staff:

Marshall - 80 gp
4 Bailiffs – 80 gp
Chamberlain – 200 gp
Senechal – 200 gp
Castellan (Lvl 8), 2000 gp


County Military –

Light Foot Soldiers – 150 troops, 5 leaders – 300 gp – AC6, longsword + dagger
Heavy Foot Soldiers – 80 troops, 3 leaders – 240 gp, AC4, longsword, spear, dagger
Light Horse Soldiers – 40 troops, 1 leader – 400 gp, AC6, longsword, lance
Heavy Horse Soldiers – 50 troops, 2 leader – 800 gp, AC 2, longsword lance
Crossbow Troops – 80, 2 leaders – 320 gp, AC 5, heavy crossbow, shortsword
13 Officers – 120 gp, AC 2 better than troop they lead
5 Armorer – 500 gp
2 Smiths – 50 gp
1 Equerry – 50 gp

Total monthly cost for the military Alzar is putting together is 2790

He gets income and expenses each month, and then rolls for population changes, and events. It will take 2 months before they will start getting taxes in. He also gets XP on an even level with his taxes, so he makes 2902 XP the first month, and then it heads up from there.


Current Confidence of County – 321 – Healthy


With his large dominion and Count title, Alzar is now 2nd in order of the nobility. A new family member is heading up the Duchy of Landfall, and the rebelling baronies are handed to others.

End of CM 1. Test of the Warlords
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Old 03-29-2015, 07:04 AM   #79
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Man I love that module! There’s just a lot smashed into it once you begin to run it. For example, the War of the Crown is just 2 pages in the book, but it takes hours to run and figure out troop movements and such We have the frost giant incursion, an actual, proper, war, betrayal, alliances, some dwarves and barbarians to help, and so forth. The combination of the Castle Guide and the Companion Rules also give this high level campaign some fun and interesting spins on stuff.

Plus you can see how epic this campaign is really getting with the high-level stuff.

(I made a few changes. For example, I made five crones instead of three, and I pulled the references to Alphatia being lost Atlantis that warred with Cypris (sic) and lost.)

Yes, he gained 2 levels in this module, but they covered two years of time. Plus Alzar requires 375k to level up each level. That happens quickly. Imagine this – right now I think he’s getting 13k a month in XP. Suppose that Alzar could get 200k in a year with the expected growth we are considering.

Now that Alzar’s in an interesting place, we are going to flesh things out. Now a few things to discuss –

1). None of the other modules that take place in Norwold are this dense, and this fun. This had political intrigue, war, combat, dungeon delving, a tournament, a challenge, building up, and so forth. It’s an intriguing combination. You could make future modules like this one, but it’d be extremely hard to follow. Imagine this, this 36 page module, which includes pictures, maps, and a table of contents and a hex grid, is 32 pages long. My dynasty talking about this is 54 pages long. Single spaced. Dang! You aren’t getting that.
2). Some of the other modules are a bit one-note, by the book, retrogrades
3). But when we get to the M Line? Holy crap we have some sausome!

So, in the meantime, let’s have some fun!

Here we go!
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Old 03-29-2015, 07:38 AM   #80
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CM2. Death’s Ride



This isn’t anything like the first one. However, I took some of the storyline of this module and moved it into the first one in a few, small, ways to enable us to use it easily enough.
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Old 03-29-2015, 08:32 PM   #81
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Just wanted to post that this has been my favorite FOFC dynasty to follow over the past few years. Thrilled to have it back and looking forward to seeing where it might end, if not the idea that it will end.
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Old 03-29-2015, 09:10 PM   #82
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Thanks thanks!
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Old 03-30-2015, 02:30 PM   #83
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What happened to Two-Lakes Vale? Why did Baron Maltus Fharo not assemble his troops at all? He’s been very loyal, from helping to defeat a Black Avenger to aiding in other ways. What happened?


When Alzar teleports back to Alpha to have a post-war chat with the King, King Ericall asks Alzar to check it out and see what he can uncover in the Barony.

It’s a rich, one-hex Barony in the foothills of the Wyrmsteeth Range generally and Eagles’ Barrier specially. It’s seven hexes inland southeast from out Bergholm Isle and four east of the farthest border of Sandralane’s Barony of Moonland.

There have been no messages or people coming out, and rumors of a black cloud that can be seen over the Barony are a bit dark. It’s only 7 hexes from here in Alpha as well (its 155 miles away), so Alzar grabs his Flying Carpet and sets out.


(You can see Twolakes Vale on the maps I linked to earlier: http://pandius.com/nrwldreg.html)
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Old 03-30-2015, 04:54 PM   #84
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As he flies over the Wyrmsteeth Range he sees a few dragons swirling around, but none come near. He also notices that rumors of a large black cloud are true. There is one swirling above the barony. It covers the whole land, can’t be breathed, and can’t be seen through. Alzar’s Ioun Stone will see through it though (As will the Gem/Star). Alzar needs a way to breathe in the cloud as well. He wishes he still had his old Necklace of Adaptation, one of his most reliable items.

Anyway, the deathcloud detects as magical, which is interesting. He arrives at the Barony and tries a few things. The deathcloud is magically poisonous and you take damage each turn you are there. But a Protection from Good/Evil spell seems to keep things at bay. After experimenting with some of his items, and taking some damage in the process, it seems like the Ring of Windwarding will work to keep the deathcloud away from him. It’ll replace his Ring of Quick Action. (He normally wears the two Action rings)

Alzar 54/75

The obvious place to begin looking is Skullheim Castle, the main stronghold of the Barony. It’s smaller than Alzar’s keep – just 40x40 yards (compared to Alzar’s 100x100 keep) and 2 floors to Alzar’s three. So they added walls, eight towers, a gatekeep, and a handful of stone buildings and built them all at once, and finished a few months ago. Took them about 2 years to do the whole thing. They built it on an island in the river, and used almost the entire island. Alzar simply flies over the river and lands at the castle gatekeep.
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Old 03-30-2015, 07:39 PM   #85
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The gatehouse is open, and in the courtyard between the castle and the walls are a few creatures. There appear to be a quartet of hill giants, and a ten-tet of manscorpions.



Alzar lands just outside of the gate, and conjures an earth elemental, then an Invisible Stalker, and then pulls Aegis out of the marble to give him a nice strike team . With the summoned creatures in front, and Aegis behind, they move in.

A boulder collides with an Elemental for 13 damage. One of the manscorpions in the back is a cleric and casts Silence, 15’ Radius on Alzar and he is silenced. Well, the, we’ll do this melee way. Alzar has the invisible Imp fly over to the cleric manscorpion and melees the others.

Init…4 vs 3/ The mans attack and miss Alzar or his minions. They hit the Elemental twice actually, but can’t damage it. They’ll move to attacking Alzar exclusively next turn. Meanwhile, a Hill Giant punches the Earth for 9 more damage. Alzar’s axe and shield try to hit a man. They have an AC1 with their hard chitin, so he needs a 4 to hit them. He rolls. 5, 11 and 18. He hits the first one for 17 damage and then 21 damage and it falls, and then bashes the next for 11. The golem punches and….rolls a 10 which…is a hit (just needs a 6) and clocks it for 3d8…3, 1, 7 for 11 more damage. 22 so far. The Elemental rolls a 2 and misses, and the Stalker a 20 and kills the wounded manscorpion. The Imp stabs out and…hits the cleric for….3 damage and…is a Manscorpion immune to poison? Nope, save vs poison or die…it rolls an 11. Is that a save made? Hold on, gotta grab my book…They need a 10, so its fine.

Next turn:

1 vs 3. The Imp hits for 2 damage and….it rolls a 8 and its fine. Alzar hits once, twice, just twice for 33 damage. The Golem adds 9 and kills the 3rd manscorpion. The Elemental punches for 15 and the Stalker finally hits for 11 26 to wound a 4th ms. They attack back, and Alzar is hit twice for 7 damage and he has to roll vs poison…even with a high save (he just needs a 8) and he gets a bonus from his Periapt of Proof vs Poison (+2) he still fails after he rolls a 3. He will die in 2d4 rounds. (4 rounds). The giants smash for 14 on the elemental, and it’s about to fall. The cleric casts Hold Person at Alzar and fails (Ring of Free Action).


Alzar 47/75

Next turn: 2 vs 5. Alzar’s team smashes the damaged man, and then savages a 5th. Meanwhile, Alzar drops the shield and carves twice with his axe and hits, kills the 5th on one hit, and damages a 6th. The Imp stabs the cleric and misses. Alzar grabs a potion of Neutralize Poison with his free hand and quaffs it. While it’s in his system for a bit, he’ll be immune to further poison. He takes 13 damage and the Earth Elemental is killed by giants. The cleric swings and misses the Imp a few times.

Alzar – 34/75

8 vs 2. The Imp takes 4. Alzar takes another 9 from scorpion loving, and the Stalker is the target of the giants now, and they hit for 18 damage. Alzar’s axe kills the wounded manscropion, and then misses (stupid 1 on a d20). The golem smashes for 13 and the Stalker misses. Meanwhile, the Imp stings for 3, and then the cleric fails and dies. Left? 4 hill giants, 3 manscorpions, one damaged.

Alzar - 25/75

They roll for morale and keep fighting. The Imp flies back.

1 vs 7. Alzar kills the wounded one and wounds the next. Everybody else misses (including the imp). The hills hit twice, including a critical, and the Stalker falls. Alzar is missed by the 2 remaining mans. They wrest initiative back and Alzar is attacked by the hills who miss (Cloak) and then it hit with a claw for 5 damage. His axe clashes a wounded manscorpion, hacks into another, and then he grabs and throws the Warp Marble at a Hill Giant with the other hand and…it fails its save (rolled a 7) and is captured. Golem hits for 7 and the imp misses. 3 hill giants, 1 gently wounded manscorpion left. Alzar has just golem and himself and Imp left.

6 vs 4. They attack and hit Alzar once with a club for 8. Then Alzar carves into, and slays, the last manscorpion and hits a 18, then uses his Boots of Striding and Springing to pull out from combat and then get behind the Golem, who hits for 11. The Imp hits for 4 but save made.

Alzar – 12/75

Alzar is out of melee range now. 3 vs 6. The golem punches for another 10, and the Imp misses. Alzar uses the Scarab of Death to coat his Trombash with poison. The golem takes 10 after one tried to attack the Imp but it had flown up out of range. They win init back - 4 vs 2. The golem takes one more hit of 13 damage. The Imp misses, and the golem adds 14 more and slays the hill giant. Alzar uses the Trombash of Returning and…rolls a 19 and…hits for 9 damage and….it rolls a 10 for its save and… it needed an 8 so its fine. The next round, the Silence Spell drops, and Alzar laps in and casts Vampiric Touch and hits for a lot of damage. He drains 6d6 and rolls 21 damage, and there is no save for V Touch. Then it takes a hit from a golem and dies. Alzar orders the Imp up and invisible against the final giant, which misses. Then it wins init and stabs the golem for another 9 damage. Alzar and the golem finish it. Then Alzar releases the final HG far way from himself next to the golem and a few rounds later, the giant dies. Alzar heals the golem with Transmute Mud to Rock.

Alzar 35/75
Imp – 10/14

They regenerate one hp/round, as a reminder. The Imp is healed by the end of combat, and Alzar will heal very quickly as well.

There is a camp here with 30000 gp in some bags that he takes. Alzar makes 39000 XP from the battle.
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Old 03-30-2015, 09:09 PM   #86
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Alzar checks out some of the buildings in the exterior courtyard, and they are abandoned, and as expected – blacksmith, stables, storehouses, stuff like that. After making his Necrology proficiency check, It looks like the place was taken by undead, and there are old necrotic marks that appear here and there from things like ghouls.

He enters the main keep, with its simple four towers, two floors, and a small dungeon below. They enter into a great hall, with banners, wall candles, hangings, and expensive carpets adorning it. There was a huge battle here, and skeletons and corpses line the area.

There is a large wooden throne at the end of the great hall, and seated on it is as man dressed in plate armor and ten men in leather arrayed around it. They begin to march stiffly, towards Alzar. The man at the end is Baron Fharo. Alzar backs up, flanked by his golem, and begins to cast another spell. He isn’t feeling anything necrotic from the ten dead looking individuals, but he is from the live looking Baron. So he casts Time Stop.

The first turn he uses the Star/Gem to figure out what is what. The Baron is possessed by a ghost, and the ten men are actually form-shifting creatures from another plane of existence he is unfamiliar with (he failed his Sage Knowledge proficiency - they are called Death Leeches).

The next round he smiles. You see, he ran out of good spells to memorize when he hit level 21, so he chose a spell that banishes creatures back to their home plane – called Banishment, 7th level spell. It has no save, will work on all summoned creatures in a 60’ foot radius, and will work on 2xspell level HD of creatures. Now, with the Imp, his spell level is 22, for 44 hd of creatures are affected. That’s…5 of them (They are 8 HD each). Now that spell won’t trigger, (since it’s against someone else) until the Time Stop ends. And….that’s it, he just got two free rounds.

Banishment hits, and half of the Death Leeches are gone. Roll for initiative…

2 vs 5. Alzar casts Black Tentacles and drops 25 tentacles in the mass of creatures coming his way. They are stopped, every one is grabbed by a lot of tentacles. They begin to try shifting their form and such, but little will happen. The possessed ghost, sensing trouble, frees the Baron, and fades away.

Over the next few turns, the tentacles will kill the Death Leeches (they take damage every turn they are captured).

Alzar gains 12000 XP from the leeches
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Old 03-30-2015, 09:31 PM   #87
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He heads over to the Baron, now freed from the possession. Apparently, the Baron was possessed by an evil magic user using magic jar, and then gave orders to open their defenses, and once that happened, a large number of undead came in, led by a high level cleric. Many were killed, most left, and a ghost took possession of his body instead. The only other info he overheard was that the cloud comes from a Deathstone which is somewhere nearby.

Alzar heads out to explore the rest of the keep while the Baron waits and begins to recover.

Alzar finds a ot of dead people, and he comes across an odd mirror, that when the Imp uses Detect magic against instead reveals the image of a person. Alzar casts Dispel Magic, and the image disappears, the person’s body reforms from the bones in front, and the guard captain is restored back to life.

There is a polymorphed cockatrice that Alzar detects with his Star/Gem and uses Polymorph Other on to restore to her form - he restored the Steward too, but she can’t tell him much else, other than a Hammer of Life can destroy the deathstone and it was broken up by a wizard and given to manscorpions to guard. The wizard rides a big blue dragon, and the dragon was given the deathstone. Alzar heads back to double check the corpses and camp of the ones killed here, but nothing else was to be found.

He doesn’t raid any of the items or places he finds in his final tour of the castle. There are no other undead or defenders here, and Alzar heads back out. He grabs the Steward, Guard Captain, King and they Mass Teleport to the King in Alpha, and Alzar drops them off to get healed and interrogated, then Alzar spends the night and relearns his spells and he teleports back in the morning. If he encounters more death leeches, he’d like to have Banishment again, and makes a few changes to his normal spell rotation. He now has Power Word, Banish at 9th level instead of Mass Domination, as one example. He also has some water friendly spells, and expecting a battle with a blue dragon, he has memorized a special answer to it.

He gets the layout of the land in safety from the Baron. About a mile from Skullheim to the northwest is Alicor and about four miles to the northeast is the small mining town of Gollim. Alzar flies over to Alicor to check things out. It’s on the south coast of Westlake.
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Old 03-30-2015, 10:07 PM   #88
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Blocks of yellow clay pave parts of the road and the ground in Alicor, and a large island sits out on the middle of Westlake, and Alzar can make it out with the Ioun Stone. He landed and the peasants meet with him. They tell him of a great blue dragon that appears from the deathcloud and attacks (there’s about 10 yards of empty space between the deathcloud and the ground here in the Barony). Alzar decides to fly out and check up on the island. He casts one of his new selection of spells for the day, Conjure Water Elemental, and they head on over - the island is just 3 miles away, and the elemental is here for 4 hours, plenty of time to get go, and inspect the small island.

The island is roughly 350 feet square, and that’s not that big, obviously. Dirt and rock have been piled into a mound that rises from the center of the island. All but the south side rise up around 100 feet above the water.

The land on the southside they approach is gently sloping and open, and there are six trees that stand before a beautiful marble staircase, There are three pairs of statues that flank the stairs, made of jade, gold and marble. Suspecting something might be animating from the statues, Alzar scouts the area from his Flying Carpet above and uses the Gem/Star. As expected, the statues are not statues, but in fact are living statues, minor constructs. However, there is something else here he didn’t expect. The Trees are massmorphed Hydras – there are six hydras there, that can turn back into hydras at any time.

Alzar lands by the coast and the Water Elemental arrives. He then conjures and earth elemental and summons his Invisible Stalker., and pulls out Aegis. He will leads with the elementals and stalker, then golem and mage, with the invisible flying Imp around as well.

As they approach the six trees melt into 6 6-headed hydrae.

Battle begins.

The Hydrae spend the first turn moving towards the elementals/Stalker. Alzar uses Hold Monster on just one Hydra, and it works. Frozen Monster. Battle begins.

8 vs 7. The Hydrae each have 6 attacks, and there are 5 left so they get a lot of chomping opportunities. However, as they are just natural creatures, they cannot damage the elementals. So after some misses, they shift targets to the Stalker, and a bunch of hits later and the Stalker is dead. The elementals smash a Hydra, and the Golem arrives at battle. Alzar is keeping the Imp out of this combat, and he casts Finger of Death and kills an unwounded Hydra.

2 vs 4. Alzar’s party slays the wounded Hydra – 3 left. They can’t hurt his stuff, and he stops casting spells. They figure it out and begin to retreat. They fall back, the as they get hammered, they hit the activation range of the six living statues, who move forward and begin to attack.

A few rounds pass, and the hydras and statues are all dead, and no damage was dealt, 5470 XP
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Old 03-30-2015, 10:48 PM   #89
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Alzar uses his Crystal Ball to scout ahead, and finds out the basic layout of the area. He wants to find the ideal place to cast his defensive spell.

There is an archway at the top of the stairs, with a large glowing Symbol. Alzar swaps helms to the Reading one, and it’s a Symbol of Discord, placed here by a high level priest. A Dispel Magic spell banishes it, and then they enter.


Beyond the archway is a large chamber rising 70 feet above to a rough ceiling. Jumped piles of statues, draperies, silks, utensils, silverware ,and more are here, but none look that valuable (total value is 5000 gp). (Afterwards, Alzar will teleport it home to his Keep to add to make some things a little pimpier.)

Off to the right is a small chamber, and there is a large group of undead here, and they have begun to move out. Here are:

10 Death Leeches,
10 ghouls
20 skeletons
20 zombies

They cannot be turned or controlled – the deathcloud prevents it. Alzar spins and casts Banishment, and 5 Death Leeches are gone, and his Elementals and golem move to keep him from being disturbed. Battle is about to begin and Alzar casts Hold Undead. Several ghouls are held, but the Death Leeches aren’t undead, so they are unaffected. Battle begins.

9 vs 3. The death leeches hit an earth elemental a few times for 11 damage with their tentacles (after they resume their true form) The others can’t penetrate the magical defenses of the golem/elementals. Alzar orders them o focus on the death leeches, and two turns later, they are all killed. The rest are smashed shortly thereafter. 12500 XP for Alzar.
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Old 03-30-2015, 11:12 PM   #90
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They head left and a arrive at a large rock, weighing 50 pounds in the center of the room, looking like a massive chunk of coal. The Gem/Star reveals this is not the deathstone, and there is a secret door, and opens into a room with an identical looking piece of stone and an evil aura from it. The elementals clean up a few undead in here as well. They head back and go right at the corridor.

Alzar finds the right spot and drops the metal pole is has been carrying with him and jams it into the dirt. Then he casts his special 3rd level spell. Lightning Rod. For the next 48 hours, any lightning attacks will hit he rod. If the Rod were loose, it would destroy the metal object, but when grounded, it survives.

After hundreds of feet have passed, they find a room with great wall hangings, and luxury. Blue scales from a dragon’s hide are glistening as she has already set up its defenses. It heard the battle with the undead, and then began to cast some spells.

Alzar can see through a few illusions it brought up. One covers a back door exit, in case damage is coming

Korbundar - -2 AC, 12d8+6 breath weapon (Lightning Bolt); 16 HD; THAC0 of 6; hp 89; 25% Magic Resistance. Immune to electricity, and the deathcloud, and has cast haste on herself, and read Anti-Magic Shell from a scroll.


The only other exist is the back one, covered by an illusion. Battle begins.

7 vs 6. Kobundar rises flies near, and lines up the water elemental and Alzar in one line and breathes. Her damage flies to the lightning rod and dissipates. (Earth’s are immune to lightning damage). The Earth, Golem, and Water advance and get to melee range, and Alzar, who cannot target the dragon with spells (stupid Anti-Magic Shell) instead uses his stored spell Lauthdryn’s Cleaving. It cancels every protection magic a person has on them, so it tears through the Shell. (It is still hasted)

The Imp is staying back, way up. 5vs3. Denuded of its precious breathe weapon, the Dragon instead flies over to melee. It attacks Alzar, misses (with the Cloak) and then instead chomps on an earth elemental and carves it for 22 damage in its many hasted hits. Alzar uses his stored Dispel Magic on the Haste and… It punctures the MR and pulls it down. The dragon takes just 9 damage from his minions.

5 vs 7. The minions hit the dragon twice for 11 and 15 damage. 26 total. Alzar casts Power Word, Kill to try and finish it off quickly. Here’s how PWK works…

The Power Word slays one creature, up to 60 feet away, with up to 60 HP. it’s not good on something that has a lot of hp, so you need to have whittled it down, or it needs to be something like a mage that starts out low. (There is a mode against multiple creatures, that does not apply). Alzar doesn’t know how many HP the dragon has left. There is no save against the spell. It just works, or it doesn’t. How many HP does it have? 89-26 and- 9, So it’s under 60. 54 to be precise. Now, there is a 1 in 4 chance the spell will hit the Magic Resistance and not work at all.

And?

It rolls a 6. It needed a 1-5 to work. The dragon has died.

Alzar strips down the skins, scales, etc.

Here there is:

120,000 gp worth of jewelry, gems, and coins of various types

4 potions – Healing, Polymorph Self, ESP, Sustenance
Slate of Identification
Luck Charm (+1 to saves)
Chainmail of Presence (+3 and CHA 18 when worn)
+2 Sword
Wizard Scroll – Gate, Astral Spell


The Slate writes in magical chalk lettering what any magical item placed on it is.
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Old 03-31-2015, 12:45 AM   #91
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He loads the items up (with the help of a golem and Elementals) and move s it into his OtherSpace, then he releases the Elementals, has his golem “not resist” the Warp Marble to capture him, and then unfurls the Flying Carpet and heads up and out.

As he looks around, he spots a mire to the west where the lake and a small river meet. There is something moving down there. The Westlake Road curves around that side of the lake, so Alzar flits over to check things out,

Strange vines and plants are creeping forth from the swamp, and Alzar notices an unnatural feel, like the deathcloud is influencing the land as well. The mire isn’t that big. Its roughly 6 miles by 4 miles at its widest, and more of a line than a square or circle shaped. He slides his Carpet down.

The movement is a group of 10 more Manscorpions. He has Azzil check them out invisibly and reports back that one appears to be a cleric, and the party appears to be identical to the group encountered before. Remembering the clue that the Hammer parts were likely hidden by manscorpions, he plans a method of attacking them. He drops down and swings into spell range, wanting to hit the cleric before it can hit him. Init. 4 vs 5

Alzar casts Power Word, Stun. It’s stunned. No return.

Next turn, still flying above them, Alzar casts Evard’s Black Tentacles as the Imp heads over to finish the paralyzed cleric. A few spears are thrown at Alzar to little effect, and then they start taking some damage from the 23 tentacles grabbing them. While concentrating on the tentacles, Alzar grabs the empty skull from his belt, casts Skulltrap, and drops it into the center of their party. It deals 20d4 damage (it’s actually 2d4 + 1d4/spell level, no max, so technically, its 24d4, but I’m going to cap it at 20d4, just like local Mystaran spells without a cap). 48 damage, save for half, and it will destroy the remaining tentacles but only two manscoprions are still alive. Alzar lands and finishes them easily.

10000 XP
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Old 03-31-2015, 01:46 AM   #92
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The cleric has a wand case with a long metal haft inside of it that is probably the haft of the Hammer of Life. Alzar flies up and can’t see any more manscorpions here, but there are some other creatures. There are a pair of gorgons about a mile away. Gorgons can only hit with melee attacks and can breathe, small clouds of petrifying gas that can’t get more than about 20 feet or so from them. Alzar can easily just fly above them, out of range, and use his Trombash of Returning to kill them. The Carpet is faster than they are running in a swamp. After killing them, Alzar finds a collar on one with the pommel of the Hammer of Life on it.

He flies back and notices frost crackling a short distance to the north. Alzar follows and the air gets increasingly colder as he approached. There is a sting to the air, and pools have been frozen in the swamp. There is a block of ice with the hammer head frozen inside. Guarding it is an oddly shaped creature


A Hydrax



It’s the one that looks like an ice crab

Alzar makes his Sage Knowledge check and…

Here we go - -2 AC, 12 HD and 60 HP, 2 attacks for 1d0 each and can detect, dispel magic, use Ice Storm, Wall of Ice, and Web three times a day each, and then is immune to lower level magic. It is from the Water Elemental Plane


Roll for init as Alzar closes… It wins and casts Web (Free Action) nothing. Alzar names the plane, and casts Power Word Banish, which works automatically and it is gone. Alzar’s axe hews into the block and grabs the head of the hammer, and when he brings the pieces together they snap together.

Alzar has reassembled the Hammer of Life.

He grabs the Hammer and flies back to the stone on the island. After an hour or so he arrives. He lands, heads in, and them hammers the stone. A resounding crack can be heard, and the stone is destroyed. On the ground is:

Deathstone Fragment - User will be cursed and lose 10 max HP; can control up to 50 HD of undead, with half level of ability. Curse is transferred if given away.
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Old 03-31-2015, 02:44 AM   #93
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After destroying the deathstone, the curse has not lifted, and the deathcloud is still there. There’s a gate that has to be closed. Alzar grabs the Carpet and heads out. It’s nearing dinner time so he does some scouting. As he does, he notices that a pass in the back of Twolakes Vale, guarded by a tower, looks like it has been taken over by something or someone else. The cleric? The wizard? Allies or monsters? Alzar teleports back to home, spends the night early, rises early, and then memorizes a slightly different version of spells, such as taking the 9th level Cleaver spell (if he doesn’t cast it, he can store it) and other anti-wizard or anti-cleric spells. This includes – Anti-Magic Shell, Vocalize, Feeblemind, Passwall – stuff like that. He also keeps his Power Word, Banish and the anti-undead and anti-summoning creatures, but he swaps out Lightning Rod, Conjure Water Elemental, and such.

He teleports back over (after unloading things from OtherSpace too) and then moves near the Tower. His imp slips near to begin scouting and he pulls out the Golem early, and he rides on the Carpet (he takes up the space of two people)

Highpass Tower is six levels high, the bottom three medium sized, and the top three smaller. It was just created to have an outpost in the militarily valuable pass, not to run a large home from. Wazor knows company is coming. Just not when. There is movement on the ground level (giants), two Efreet on top of the tower guarding it, and there are no windows in the center of the Tower. What Alzar wants to do is attack in a direction the wizard doesn’t expect. Most wizards expect and build up defenses from magical angles (such as from the Ethereal Plane) or will have Symbols, Glyphs, golems, massmorphed creatures, Wizard Locked doors, and that sort of thing on the various entrances.

But what they often forget is that a mage can penetrate their defense with a simple Passwall spell aimed at the middle of their home. It’s like tunneling into a mage’s complex with Dig and Passwall after you’ve passed the traps and monsters

According to the Baron, this tower’s third floor is a storeroom, the 2nd was barracks, and then 4th quarters, and the 5th offices. Alzar decides to hit the 4th floor, which you can tell, because the tower gets smaller.
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Old 03-31-2015, 05:58 PM   #94
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He flies in and casts Passwall at the wall, and then flies into the tower with the Golem, who then unloads.

4th floor is now akennel with a quartet of hell hounds that begin barking. They are caged up. Alzar hears nose from upstairs, and the room here is the entire floor, there are stairs up and down to the sides of where he entered. This is a lab and study and a bit of a sleep chamber all in one and Wazor is here, arming himself. He sees Alzar come up and casts the 8th level Major Globe of Invulnerability and is immune to all 7th and lower level spells. It’s a pretty good opening. Alzar orders his imp and golem to move in and attack physically, and rolls for init.

5 vs 6. Alzar casts Power Word Kill and…no protection, he dies. He has very low HP actually. He was level 24. Most high level magic users are glass cannons.

More advice from the module we are skipping (“Make sure that the characters do not kill or capture Wazor in this encounter!”) Not for any plot based reason, but just to strengthen the final battle.

Anyway, Wazor has perished and Alzar checks and finds:

Ring of Protection +2
Cleric Ring of Spell Storing – Word of Recall
Potion – Blue Dragon Control, Elemental Form, Human Control, Undead Control (Ghoul)
Scroll – Protection from All Elementals; MU Scroll - Close Gate (reverse of Gate Spell)

Staff of Power 16 charges

Wazor’s Spellbook

To be revealed later after decoding.

In the room are a bunch of random items taken from the barony (gold, gems, jewelries, cushions, furniture, art, etc) worth around 100,000 Alzar won’t touch.

He takes about a hour to load up the various lab equipment into his own mobile laboratory he has in his OtherSpace.

The Passwall is gone, so he heads to the roof, where there are two efreeti, but when Wazor was killed, they were freed and they fled back to the Fire Plane.

He grabs the Carpet, puts his golem in the Warp Marble, and then heads out. Wazor’s notes mentioned that there was a gate at the Temple of the Stars to the east, so Alzar heads out, scanning for the Temple.

It’s about 7 miles to the south and east. The temple was built by hermit-clerics and then abandoned when the Baron claimed and began to settle Twolake Vale a little more than two years ago. The three that be felt it was an ideal place to open a gate to another plane from which the deathcloud poured out and which the connection to the deathstone was harnessed. As long as the deathstone existed, the gate could not be closed. But now…
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:13 PM   #95
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The temple lies just beyond a sharp bend in the road and Alzar can spy the cleric from some distance, standing on a rocky platform about 30 feet up the cliff wall from the temple, (made of white marble). Alzar summons the golem from the Warp Marble. The Temple is just a simple one level deal, a dome, about 120 feet in diameter.

As Alzar approaches, a dragon emerges from the temple, and the cleric mounts it, and moves out. It looks identical to the one he slew two days before. Hmmm….

Alzar doesn’t want to fly and fight something that’s better in the air than him, so he lands, and forces the golem to lands as well, he’s about two rounds from the cleric and dragon to be in spell range of most spells He grabs some dirt from the ground and Conjures an Earth Elemental. Then Alzar casts Anti-Magic Shell to give himself a good defensive shell to use, grabs his axe and Bright Barrier and moves.

The dragon does not breathe lightning, but instead breathes a gas identical to the one breathes by that drolem earlier that Alzar encountered a few months ago. This is likely a drolem, not a dragon. The cleric casts Sticks to Snakes to turn some of the nearby foliage into an enemy, and these move in. Alzar orders his elemental and golem to smash these and Azzil moves in for a surprise attack later when ordered.
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:39 PM   #96
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Init – 7 vs 1. The Drolem lands and moves to melee range with Alzar, the cleric dismounts and does so as well. Alzar prepares, smashing a few snakes, and his guards do as well.

Init 3 vs 2. The drolem snaps at Alzar and hits for 12. It’s too bad Alzar didn’t grab his Golem of Whistle Control or Talisman of the Golem from storage in OtherSpace, but it’s too late to get it now. Alzar’s axe snakes out and hits the cleric once for 7 damage (no magical bonuses) and the Barrier smashes for 11. The rest of the snakes are killed.

Init – 3 vs 9. Alzar orders his group to focus on the drolem. He can’t hit it (weapon is non-magical) so he focuses on the cleric. Alzar hits for 14 damage and the drolem takes 11. Then the priest casts Heal and fully heals himself and Alzar takes 14 from the drolem’s hits.

Alzar 50/75

Init 4 vs 3. They miss Alzar a lot (he gets bonuses for the Bright Barrier still. Alzar’s group hits the drolem for 15. Alzar adds 5 to the cleric and misses. Alzar takes one hit for 6 from the drolem and a mace-punch for 3 from the cleric. Then they smash for a little more damage.

42/75

Initiative. 5 vs 3. Alzar takes more damage, and his group finally clocks the drolem for some major damage and it has around 20 hp left. But Alzar misses twice and his with the Bright Barrier for 8 damage. 3 vs 7. The golem rolls a 16 and hits for…12 damage, and the Earth rolls….4 and misses. Alzar uses his axe twice against the cleric and hits once for 1d8 plus 4 damage (for 17 STR and weapon mastery) or…7 more damage. Then he turns and attacks with the Shield on the drolem instead and….hits for….9 and the drolem falls dead. The priest heals its wounds.


Alzar – 31/75

With the drolem dead their foe is going to look for a way to get out of the battle. 4 vs 5. The Earth rolls a 10 and hits for…13. The golem needing a 5, rolls a 7 and cracks for…9 more. Alzar hits once for 5. The priest casts Abjure and banishes the Earth Elemental. That’s a bad long-term play. That was his final level 6 spell. (He cast three)

4 vs 6. Alzar and his golem hit for 31 damage combined. The cleric heals most of it with Cure Critical Wounds. 7 vs 2. The cleric casts Striking on his mace. Odd choice. Alzar and golem add 15 to him. 8 vs 7. The cleric swings and connects with the golem for 14 damage (magical mace plus striking effect). So he’s switching targets to drop Alzar’s golem while he can’t cast spells and heal. That’s a smart choice.

1 vs 8. It’s time. Alzar orders the Imp to attack the cleric unknown from invisibility. That gives him +4 to hit on this first attack. He needs a 13 or higher to hit. He rolls a 19 (didn’t even need to ambush!). 2 damage and…the cleric makes his save on a 17 rolled, but it clearly scares him. Alzar smiles as his group carves into him for 19 more damage.

9 vs 7 The priest has to cure, but he still has some damage against him. Alzar orders the imp to attack and then go invisible and fly out of range in an odd direction, down. The Imp…rolls an 11 and misses. Alzar rolls. 20, 19, and 6. That’s 2 hits for 16 damage. Then the golem rolls….8 and hits and then rolls off 13 damage – 29 total damage.

Next turn. This would be when Alzar would use the Ring of Quick Action, if he was wearing it, and not under an Anti-Magic Shell. 9 vs…9. Yay reroll! 4 vs 6. Whew! The cleric is down to 24 hp. Alzar attacks and rolls….12, 4 and 15. That’s an axe hit for….3 + 4, 7 damage and 9 from the Barrier. 16 damage from Alzar. The golem attacks and rolls….6. Now, it has a THAC0 of 7 and the cleric an AC of 2, so he needs a 5 or better, that works. Now, the golem hits for…3d8 damage and the cleric has left 9 hp. The first die rumbles and lands on a 5. If the next die is at least a 3, then the priest dies (because the last one could be a one). … another 5. Dead priest. A 4 for the last one, 14 damage was dealt.


Dead priest.
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Old 03-31-2015, 08:53 PM   #97
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Alzar finds on the body:

+3 mace
Rod of the Wyrm (Chaotic)
Scroll of Portals
Missile Deflector Shield (+1, +4 vs missiles, 20% chance Magic Missile negated)

The Rod is a powerful magical item, no idea why it wasn’t used unless the cleric wasn’t chaotic. A chaotic user can turn the rod once/day into a small 30 hp, black dragon, that can breathe acid and everything. If slain, it returns to rod form.

Scroll is awesome. Twice/day it can be used as a Passwall, when unfurled and pressed against a wall, and the scroll disappears until half hour later when the Passwall ends, or when canceled by the user


There is nothing else here.

Alzar doesn’t want to cast Close Gate from the scroll and lose that, so he stores the Dispel Magic and Carver spells, and then rests the night, learns the reverse of Gate, and then casts it. The Gate closes. Alzar then teleports back to the King to report his victory.

King Ericall offers him 50000 gp or another section of territory added to his County. Alzar chooses the latter and expands his influence again. He takes Raider’s Point, the hex on the other side of the entrance to the Great Bay.

We’ll look at that in a bit. Meanwhile, Alzar has freed the barony just seven days after starting!

End of CM2. Death’s Ride
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Old 04-01-2015, 01:00 AM   #98
Abe Sargent
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This is not exactly a major module, and it has some issues. Basically the module wants your high-level characters to quest all over the small Barony of Twolakes Vale in order to figure out that the evil is coming from a Doomstone that has to be hit by a Hammer that has to be assembled. So you are heading to find that out, find the pieces, and the locations. The major problem is that all of these locations are known. For example, there is a trail from the main one to the Temple of the Stars, which is one of the final dungeons. Here’s what CM2 says about this “Make sure the characters don’t stumble onto the trail that leads to the Temple of the Stars when they are in Fraggi. They can only learn of the trail while in Gollim.” Gollim, of course, being the second o final place in the rotation, despite being just TWO MILES from the castle you start the adventure at. (You are expected to head north and west of the castle along the Westlake road. That’s bad adventure writing! Where is the opportunity for the player to do their own thing and, you know, actually role-play? Also, when in a module with sort of high-level players, you never known when a player with Polymorph Self into a bird or cast Fly or something, and then head up. In fact, the first castle has, as you’ll recall, bad guys a quartet of hill giants. If you charm them, you can find out everything right there. The carefully doling out of clues one step at a time is done. Here’s what the adventure says about that:

“Don’t allow the characters to learn the location of Korbundar’s Lair or the Temple of the Stars while they are adventuring in this stronghold.” This is bolded it’s so important to the adventure. Again, that is a poorly designed adventure. We are simply running it because it flows right along from the first CM.

Here’s another one for you. Why is the Hammer of Life here? In the module, it reads that only the Hammer of Life can destroy the deathstone, not even a wish can. The bad guys know that the Hammer of Life can destroy their stone, that’s why they break it into three pieces and hide them.

Now, why would you use the deathstone against the only place where there is a measure that can defeat it? And if you didn’t know, or if the Hammer of Life was discovered later, then why keep the three pieces within a couple of miles of each other, easily findable, and just a few miles from the stone? Surely your 24th level wizard can teleport, fly, Plane Shift, or otherwise move somewhere else and place the pieces thousands of miles away, and thousands of miles from each other, At the very least, have your dragon spend half a day flying, secure one piece about a hundred miles away, and then repeat twice more, choosing three far flung places and three different methods of security. One guarded perhaps, one in an impossible to open chest in the bottom of an ocean or something, etc.

At very least, give it a hand wave. Mention that the powers that be brought the Hammer of Life in to help out the locals when the deathstone was used, but they found out and stopped the hammer and killed the party with it before it could reach the deathstone, and then they broke it into three pieces. But before they could remove it, the powers magically tethered the Hammer to the Vale, so it could not be removed, teleported, flown out, etc. And neither could it’s parts either. But nope, we couldn’t even get that.
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Old 04-01-2015, 07:48 PM   #99
Tellistto
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Nice job, Abe. Too bad the writing sucked so back in that module. Looking forward to more!

Tell
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Old 04-02-2015, 06:31 PM   #100
Abe Sargent
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Originally Posted by Tellistto View Post
Nice job, Abe. Too bad the writing sucked so back in that module. Looking forward to more!

Tell

Thanks!
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