Monday, 27 December 2010

New Year, New Project

I've been a bit remiss on the RPG posting front it has to be said, for the simple reason I've not really got anything to say that hasnt been bandied round the "echo chamber" before, coupled with I've not participated/DM'd a D&D style RPG for coming up to two years (I think!)

I'm playing in an excellent PbEM Call of Cthulhu game and that has more than satisfied my RPG cravings over the last six months which has led to me focussing on what might now be termed my "primary hobby" - the collection and painting of the "little men"

2011 means I'm going to start another wargame army, having got to saturation point with the several I've already got.

Dark Elves - on the backburner again - having batch painted two units of spear and crossbow men and ladies (Dark Elves are equal opps employers it seems) in a month, I cant face the Cold One Knights and Corsairs for a while
Still have a couple of character figures on the painting table,suffering as I do from too many Chiefs and not enough Indians syndrome.

Kroot: I've got as far as I can with them without engaging in quite a lot more converting - and need to test them in a wargame to see if they can pound my mates orky horde............and then eat them on skewers afterwards B-)

Inquisition: Sitting in their box

Space Marines: Back burner way behind the Dark Elves

Assorted Scifi Mercenary Scum - need to make my mind up what I'm doing with them, whether to go more mechanised or not in the sense APCs etc

Soooo.......I surprised even myself and went for Vampire Counts/Undead ............not really sure if this is a by blow of playing Call of Cthulhu by email for the last six months or so, going for something "darker".............and they are very "cool" figures as the chaps in blue polo shirts would say.......

Today I've spent all afternoon assembling some Wight Cavalry on skeletal steeds (and they look brilliant even unpainted)

Saturday, 28 August 2010

Unchained Melody

After the viewing of the "art" in Quigleys room Solomon bid Al and Julia goodnight after stifling a yawn and a loosening of tie started to make his way to his own....

Going down the spiral stairs he grinned smugly to himself as he dropped the key he'd "borrowed" from Quigley into a pocket and started humming an old Jewish tune his Grandfather had favoured.

Feeling self satisfied he entered the corridor where his room was and stopped dead in his tracks.

He could clearly hear the same tune, if scratchily rendered in the corridor as well as in his he made his way stealthily up the corridor....and past his room.

Yep - the tune was definitely coming from his room - but he hadnt left the wireless on.

Shaking out the garotte in his pocket he prepared it for use in one hand while fishing for his key and listened again before putting the key in the lock, using the cover of the doorframe.


"Here goes - you've done this plenty of times, Steinberg - no problem" he thought as he turned the key and pushed the door open.

The room was empty.

The wireless continued playing while he gave the room a check. Nothing disturbed or out of place.

"Thats enough" he said aloud to himself as he crossed back and switched the wireless off.........the tune carried on.

Giving it a hard thump he switched it on and off - to no avail.

The floor started to vibrate in time with the tune - this was getting spectacularly.....annoying.

"Right then - have it your way" he said wrenching the plug out of the socket and picking the wireless up and carrying it to the door. The wireless stopped as soon as it crossed the threshold.

"Hmmm.......lets see what these parlour tricks are about"

Picking the wireless up he put it near the door, still churning the melody out and locked the door.

The reverberation and footsteps grew louder. Solomon unhurriedly crossed to his valise, flipped it open screwed a suppressor onto a 9mm Automatic and placed himself with a clear shot at the door.

The music and footsteps grew louder...and stopped.

The door handle turned - "Locked - try again"

The door rattled violently in its frame.


Solomon crept across the room and flung the door open to a deserted corridor

Leaving the door open he picked up the radio, placed it outside near the door and locked it again.

"Bedtime - its been a long day" - he thought with a yawn.

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Alice................and Quigley

Reception was quiet.Ideal.

After a quick look round to check there was nobody else in the immediate vicinity Solomon approached the Reception desk.

“Good Evening,Sir how can I be of assistance?” Ursulas smile was professionally friendly – and completely false

Solomon affected a well practised sheepish grin. “This must sound real dumb but an acquaintance of mine recommended this hotel to me and said he may be vacationing here about now. I thought it'd be a surprise to look him up if he was”

“And what might your acquaintance's name be?” she enquired.

“Louis...........Louis Fetterman”

“There is a Mr Fetterman here, but guest privacy prevents me giving out his room number...............I can take a message though”

A movement registered in Solomons peripheral vision............the docks bruiser he'd spoken to earlier, Terry Fletcher was blatantly making his way behind the desk and into the office. Ursula didn't bat a heavily mascara laden eyelid..........


“No – but thanks I'm sure I'll run into him” - “Probably fatally” he thought.

With a final ingratiating smile which dropped from his face as soon as his back was turned, Solomon turned and left heading towards the Green Mountain ballroom.

The Green Mountain ballroom was splendidly decked out. Whirling through the fug of cigar and cigarette smoke were several couples, Al and Julia included. As the current dance ended Solomon spotted a slightly disgruntled looking Dwight Albert tap Alessandro on the shoulder and presumably ask if he could cut in.

The Ronquist sisters had their hands full with a queue of young bucks waiting for their turn, their exaggerated laughter and bragadoccio clearly an attempt to impress the two young socialites.

Scanning round again his eyes met the almost pleading expression of Alice he sauntered over.

Before the words “Would you like to...........” were spoken his hand was grabbed by two smaller ones and he was whisked onto the dance floor.

Alice was it appeared good company when outside of her brothers sphere of influence.
When the notes of the last dance faded away he spied Julia and Alessandro trying to attract his attention.

Seeing Dwight was still around he leaned in and said “I'll see you tomorrow maybe Miss Albert – its been a pleasure”

Assuming Dwight was escorting Alice back to her room he went and joined Julia and Al for the “private viewing”

A search for Quigley found him half-frozen on the terrace peering myopically at the expanse of darkened forest and listening to only something he could hear.

Julia persuaded him they'd quite like to see his work and it might be beneficially warmer to all involved indoors and he set off at something between a stagger and a stumble towards his room.........

If thats where embracing the Green Fairy gets you – I'll give it a miss”........

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Dinner and Dancing

Solomon got to the bar at 7pm and settled himself on a barstool waved for the bartenders attention and lit a cigarette.

“What can I get you Sir?”

He ordered a Bloody Mary, which the bartender placed carefully in front of him.

”Thanks - add it to my tab”.

The bar was starting to fill with the young skiing crowd and some other guests Solomon wasnt familiar with. He scanned the faces in the bar to see if any matched the photograph he'd such luck......though a heavily built type was most definitely eyeballing him.

Just as he was deciding to do something about it Julia and Allesandro arrived. After exchanging pleasantries – there was some discussion about who else was sitting at their table. Julia had a knack for attracting admirers – and had already near enough invited a New York political high-flyer by the name of Dwight Albert to dine with them.

He also noticed there was a certain amount of frostiness when Julia was introduced to Albert's attractive sister Alice who seemed to be shyly lurking in his shadow

The introductions done Solomon put out his cigarette and excused himself with “I'll catch you good folks later, I've got to speak to someone”

He eased himself off the barstool leaving them debating about whether to invite a dishevelled looking artistic type or not...........dinner would either be interesting or like watching paint dry...........literally.

Ambling across the bar, Solomon approached the thickset character who had been looking his way earlier. Another brawler.

“Something I can help you with friend? I dont think we've met but I couldnt help noticing you looking my way earlier...........”

After a long stare which Solomon met “Yeah – were you involved in the trouble on the Lower West Side a while back?”

“Not me – must have been some other guy” Solomon replied.

He was aware of the mobs involvement in the trouble referred to but hadnt taken part not being overkeen on such grubby activities as hand to hand brawling.

At that point the dinner bell rang.............”No harm done then”

Solomon turned and wandered through to the dining room locating his table with a wave from Julia.

In the first of several attempts to impress Julia, Dwight Albert “bought” the sommellier with the discreet application of a $50 bill as an incentive.

Here was someone worth knowing - poised and wore wealth easily.

By contrast Quigley appeared to be trying to travel to the opposite end of the spectrum with some gratuitous attention seeking ….......................

“I am a friend of the Green Fairy; she is a tender lover and leaves me intoxicated by her verdant beauty”.

Quigley waved for the sommelier and ordered something in a conspiratorial schoolyard whisper. Shortly a bottle of absinthe arrived along with a bowl of sugar cubes and a carafe of ice water. Dwight stared into the distance, saying nothing, Solomons disdain was written across his face for all to see.

The absinthe was passed around, out of curiosity more than anything, Solomon declined none too politely, dismissing it as brainrot

The conversation plummeted to new depths when Quigley pontificated extensively on surrealism.............

“I fear that when it came to true surreality, I found them wanting. They, for their part, found me too disturbing – however, Miss Somersby, I think that you would find their choice of words intriguing, not dérangé but affolé”
Julia stiffened in her seat. He certainly was disturbing, that his former colleagues described him as terrifying made her even more fascinated, despite herself. He flicked his ash onto the floor as he spoke.

“They would have nothing more to do with me. I came home via London and sojourned there for a week or two; whilst I was there, I had the pleasure of meeting two very interesting gentlemen, Charles Bennett and George Jones, who describe themselves as mystics. And of course, I had the splendid good fortune to meet Arthur Rackham himself. I greatly admire his style – are you familiar with it?" He scanned their faces for a response, seemingly keen to begin a discussion. After the pause he continued.
"Of course, his work is not to all tastes and some find him frightening. He took me into his confidence and told me that he has several pieces for which he was unable to find an exhibitor. No-one dared show them. I resolved to make every effort to see them one day”

Quigleys presence at the table was it appeared Alessandros doing............

"Mr Quigley told me he is working on some pieces here in this very hotel," his face lit up with enthusiasm "I would certainly like to see them". Quigley shrugged with the faintest hint of embarrasment. as did Solomon with a large dose of utter indifference

“Signor Mancini is correct, although my doctor would throw up his hands in despair were he to hear of it. I was sent here for complete rest due to a nervous collapse before Christmas but I found that I was wholly unable to remain inactive. This place is utterly conducive to my work – it affects me, drawing out the visions within. I have such dreams as art is made of. Signor Mancini has displayed an interest in seeing my work – I wonder if anyone else at the table might consider a private viewing later, once dinner is over?”

I'd rather blow my own kneecaps off” Solomon thought as he carried on stoically chewing, heavy lidded and watching the dispute come to a head between Messrs Albert and Quigley

Not to be outdone Dwight interrupted, throwing his napkin down before him.
“I am not in the slightest bit interested in decadent, nay, degenerate artwork of this nature.”

Well said, nor am I” thought Solomon catching Dwight's eye and rolling his eyes

“ I can see you for what you are, sir – a louche dilettante, sucking the life out of the American art world with your morally fraudulent obscenities”

Quigley leant back, gesturing towards Dwight with a dismissive flap of his hand.

“Obscenities? You are a representative of the society that sent millions to their deaths in barbed wire and mud for a failed vision and you have the gall to talk to me of obscenities?”

Now this was getting interesting............

Julia stared uncomfortably at the growing argument. Alessandro stuffed another morsel into his already crammed mouth. When the volume increased Al was almost on his feet, showing his palms to the two men in a bid for calm. Solomon watched – his money was on Dwight Albert if it came to fisticuffs...............

Quigley turned to Julia.

“Miss Somersby, if I have offended and insulted you by my actions at the table, I apologise. In you, I recognise a kindred spirit, a rebel and a fighter against the shackles of society. In honour of your integrity and that alone, I shall provoke no further; might we continue this discussion after dinner?”
She laughed, a little too loudly. "Mr Quigley, I don't know about that . . ." Then seeing the pain growing quickly in his eyes the smile vanished, her voice determined as she heard herself say "Yes, of course. We can talk later, I'd be delighted."

Their meal continued with Quigley and Dwight giving each other frosty glances across the table but remaining restrainedly polite. As dinner ended and the table staff cleared away the plates, bottles and glasses, there was an announcement.

“Ladies and gentlemen!” called a voice. They looked over to see a smiling young man,Tommy Milner

“I’m pleased to announce that the Green Mountain ballroom is now open for dancing; we have Miss Grace La Rue and Fred Mulrooney backed by Sly and Lefty Fitzgerald. Rudi at the bar tells me he has giggle water aplenty for those who haven’t had enough at their tables”

Solomon felt the rare need for more “giggle water” after that conversation.............

Julia made a quick exit, taking a final slurp of champagne near dragging Alessandro onto the dancefloor.

His mind made up partly to make some enquiries and mostly to get away from Quigley Solomon excused himself, shaking hands with Dwight and an abrupt nod to Quigley as the strains of the first dance started.

Solomon made his way to Reception..............

**Credit due to both Dungeonmum and Daddy Grognard.........I've just adapted this to my characters point of view.**

Thursday, 19 August 2010


The train rolled to a halt at Brattleboro station. Solomon disembarked with the other passengers and took in the station – both platforms of it – Northbound and Southbound and along with other travellers made his way to the exit, pausing for a smoke and taking a a few lungfuls of the bracing mountain air – a definite contrast to the carriage.

Several other travellers including Julia and Alessandro were making their way to a bus with a smartly uniformed porter who introduced himself as Leonard who then gave the cold and tired travellers what Solomon considered to be a pompous and rather obvious speech about who he was, the function of the bus and where they were going.

It still beat talking to mechanical press salesmen ….......but not by much.

Eventually and not a moment too soon the luggage was stowed and they were underway.

The Majestic was ten miles away down ice-laden roads which caused some consternation amongst the passengers and Karl the driver performed his role with practiced expertise. When the glittering lights of the Majestic hove into view his knuckles were white on the wheel.

The tyres crunched to a halt outside the hotel and the tired passengers started the process of reclaiming their luggage before entering the Hotel.

Solomon leaned down to pick up his valise........and paused...........the porter Leonard had a strange malevolent look on his face after certain of the soon-to-be guests passed him by.

“Whats the matter?” Julia enquired, noticing Solomon's surreptitious observations.
The porter was now politely nodding when passengers thanked him, some of whom were pressing small bills into his hand by way of a tip.

Solomon shrugged “Nothing to worry about at the moment – that porter was looking at certain people strangely. And I dont mean pleasant.”

With a long hard look at Leonard who was now the picture of self effacing civility they entered the Hotel.

The new arrivals were greeted by the Manager Oliver Phillips Dixon who expressed the hope they would enjoy their stay and pointed them in the direction of very welcome glasses of mulled wine held by a white liveried waiter.

Agreement was made to meet Julia and Alessandro in the bar before dinner for an aperitif

Those new arrivals who had made arrangements in advance dispersed to their rooms. Solomon was relieved to discover the Majestic had plenty of rooms available for ad hoc guests and the necessary arrangements were made.

Grudgingly Solomon allowed the bellboy to carry his luggage to his room, tipping him as he left solely to be rid of him.

The door opened onto a tastefully appointed room comprising sage green décor, a comfortable looking bed and a wooden table with carved legs on which a wireless sat.

Taking off his shoes, Solomon crossed the thick pile carpet to the other door which led to an en-suite bathroom finished with gold plated taps. On the shelf below the shaving mirror there were complimentary toiletries and preparations........

“Nice............but more important things to do first.” he reminded himself.

The room got a thorough once-over the only thing that seemed out of place was the flicker of a fire out in the snowbound wilderness, how close he couldnt tell because of the dark.


Filing the oddity away with a mental shrug he checked his “tools” - for this assignment two of his favoured 9mm semi automatics and a small easily concealed .25 holding six rounds.

While the bath ran he unpacked and an hour later saw him tuxedo and tie clad. On his way out he picked up a packet of cigarettes and dropped the small pistol into a hidden pocket. Well tailored suits were an affordable luxury from his “commissions” which made up for the skulking and lying low after the event.

Giving the room a final check and closing the door he thought aloud to himself

“This is the mutts nuts Steinberg, better than the usual crummy apartments you end up in”

With a spring in his step he made his way to the bar for a pre-dinner aperitif................

Friday, 13 August 2010

The Journey

10th January 13:02 – 16:30

Solomon finished reading the newspaper, apart from the domestic news on the imminent Prohibition Law the only worthwhile item of interest overseas appeared to be the crushing defeat of the Imperial forces by the Bolsheviks in the Russian Civil War.

The other passengers seemed keen to regale a complete stranger with their business in these close confines presumably as a way of passing the time.

In a fairly short interval Solomon had discovered from several conversations The Majestic hotel was the place to be in Vermont as well as stoically sitting through the marvels of the mechanical press from a travelling salesman which caused him to have a serious rethink on the contents of his business card.
On balance he considered it time well spent.

“Excuse me – do you have the right time?”

Keeping his expression carefully neutral Solomon looked up to find the young woman in the foxfur smiling enquiringly at him......

“Sure have, miss” …......and held his wristwatch up for inspection.

The time noted he smiled at her and observed “Nice hat”

Despite looking taken aback at the remark she replied “Thanks – say are those Black Russian cigarettes you have there........very continental … my new friend Al”

A glance across at the young man introduced as “Al” produced a mixed and contradictory result.

Hispanic or possibly Italian looking and strongly built like a boxer or brawler with scarred hands and ink stained fingers from jotting in a small black bound notebook was his first impression.

“I'm Julia Sommersby by the way, a pleasure to make your acquaintance”

He was aware of the New York Sommersby's position in society circles...........near the top.

The man previously identified as “Al” leaned across and introduced himself........

“Allesandro Mancini”

Shaking both of their hands Solomon said “Steinberg, Solomon Steinberg likewise a pleasure to make both of your acquaintance. What brings you to the frozen wastes of Vermont?” with a gesture at the blurring snowscape passing them by.

The answers came back respectively Julia was to deliver a talk on the role of women in aviation and was a pilot herself and Alessandro was going for an interview for a job as a baristo coincidentally at the Hotel Majestic which thus far had unfailingly got glowing recommendations by those travellers destined for Vermont.

Solomon told them Vermont the Green Mountains and environs had been recommended to him as a vacation venue by someone he knew..............but hadnt been organised enough to make a reservation.

As the train started to slow he decided the Majestic was as good a place as any to start the search for Fetterman...............and improvise from there..............

Wednesday, 11 August 2010


Please excuse my slowness to welcome two more readers of my erratic postings

Mr Gone.......


Sir Larkins whose Pendragon campaign logs it has to be said I've been reading avidly for a while....even more so now I understand some of the game mechanics

Monday, 9 August 2010

Pennsylvania Station

11:45 am 10th January 1920

Passing under the impressive edifice of Pennsylvania Station sent an involuntary chill down Solomon's spine as he emerged onto the main concourse.

Putting his valise and violin case down he leaned against a pillar, ostensibly watching the mass of humanity frequenting the station going about their business whilst having a smoke and checking his interior pockets for his ticket and “business cards” giving his occupation as “Musical Instrument Salesman

The thought “What lurks beneath?” forced its way to the front of his mind seemingly of its own volition as people went about their business.
Nothing was ever as it seemed........

Having satisfied himself he wasnt being tailed, unlikely though this was it paid to be careful. The Organisation's "cleaners" prided themselves on their anonymity. In spite of this the Feds and their informers got everywhere these days and who knows what snippet of information they might get wind of by accident?

Better to be safe than sorry......

A trip to a newstand concluded with the purchase of a newspaper partly to read and also for discouraging unwanted conversation on the train. A visit to the cafeteria resulted in sandwiches and coffee followed by a leisurely stroll to board the train

Solomon had nearly made it to the train when the clattering of fashionable Parisian high heels came from behind him, followed by a fleeting impression of a young woman in a luxuriant fox fur passing at a speed that shouldnt have safely been possible, given her footwear.

By the time he got to the conductor to present his ticket, she had boarded.

Solomon took a seat by himself and a couple of minutes later with a venting of steam and a jolt the train pulled away for the four and a half hour journey to Vermont.

Folding the broadsheet newspaper in half, Solomon indulged in some people watching while pretending to read the Baseball results and eating a sandwich whilst taking an occasional sip of coffee..
A cursory inspection of the carriage revealed a mixed selection of other travellers from New York socialites to one young man whose fur coat belied the well worn appearance of the rest of his apparel.

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Solomon - Introduction

Since Dungeonmum's blogging about her character's exploits in Daddy Grognards Call of Cthulhu PBEM campaign, I thought I'd write stuff up from my characters perspective....


The loose stair creaked.

Slowly Solomon reached for the suppressed 9mm pistol that was never far from immediate reach and took aim.........

An envelope sized object slid under the apartment door with a rustling hiss, followed closely by the scampering of feet, leaving considerably less stealthily than they had arrived.

The black blob of wax used by the Organisation to notify its operatives of their next mission was instantly recognisable.Scooping up the envelope with his free hand, Solomon seated himself in the tatty armchair, placed his weapon on the battered table nearby and slit open the envelope.

After inhaling the unique aroma of the Florentine paper of the envelope, the folded paper inside revealed a photograph and the accompanying note divulged the mark's name was Louis Fetterman....

An activist and anarchist who owes the Organisation money. Clean up the mess, recover the money and make it look like an accident. Sources tell us he was last seen at Pennsylvania Station last Saturday boarding a train to Vermont, he may be trying to make a run for Canada

Allowing himself a wry smile at the mental image of a large snowball crushing the prosperous looking portly gentlemen in the photograph, he flicked open his lighter with practised dexterity and near simultaneously lit a Sobranie Black Russian and destroyed the parchment, which was then deposited in the slightly reeking kitchenette bin.

“To work Mr Steinberg, time waits for no man”

After an afternoon spent purchasing necessary items and chatting to a talkative and over-enthusiastic sporting goods store clerk, he discovered trains to Vermont were daily at 12:02pm and Brattleboro was popular with hunters, skiers and vacationers.

It was also conveniently near the border.............

Sunday, 1 August 2010

Call of Cthulhu - On the Bench

On a whim this morning I've decided to start work on a "reserve" character for the Call of Cthulhu PBEM in case my current one meets a sticky end involving tentacles.........lets face it he probably will B-)

I've drawn my inspiration in this case from Priest Valon from Gangs of New York....

Friday, 30 July 2010

Vampire slayers

Couldnt resist posting these about encounters between well known Vampire Slayers and Sparkly Ass Vampires.........

I think Blade definitely gets a surprise attack in that picture.......

Monday, 19 July 2010

Incoming: Pendragon

Having sold my AD&D Birthright collection on Ebay last week, I decided it might be an idea to try something new, apart from Call of Cthulhu

Today the Pendragon rulebook dropped through the letterbox (all 1.5 inches thickness of it!)

Needless to say I've not even skimmed it yet B-)

Sunday, 18 July 2010

Hello Chatdemon!

Welcome Chatdemon who seems to have found my dark, slightly dusty corner of the Blogosphere

Have some refreshment while I tidy up a bit! B-)

Call of Cthulhu

After being away awhile, time for an update, now I'm fed up with collecting as many Kroot as I can get my mitts on

I'm playing in my pal Daddy Grognards PBEM Call of Cthulhu along with a couple of other fine folk (Dungeonmum and Rich)

Having played it exactly once before in a haze after a few intoxicating beverages a while back, the character creation came flooding back and the emails from Daddy Grognard started to arrive

Me, I've never enjoyed playing academics or librarians... - as I recollect my other character was an ex-army veteran, except I couldnt remember the stats being "a while ago" a quest for inspiration, I looked down and beheld the assorted Eidos Hitman titles in a pile next to the PC and decided on a gangland mobster/hitman.......except I didnt want to be Mafia......

A quick visit to Wiki and Gangs of New York (not the film!) and Solomon Steinberg was born.

Bound to meet a messy end involving tentacles ......B-)

Saturday, 17 April 2010

Work in Progress

Is these guys I got the other day on Ebay.......Scibor Miniatures resin Scifi Ogres/Ogryns....
They make the GW one look quite puny in comparison - and I've got a few (!)
They've all had other bits stuck on them since I got them and are still at the early stages yet - thus far I'm pleased with them B-)

There and back again!

I'm back...

To those who were concerned many thanks B-)

My RPGing ground to a halt due to a slightly unusual set of circumstances which I said previously I wouldnt go into publicly and still wont.

This then leaves me with the possibility only of bi-annual games with a mate I've known since we were six.

Unfortunately I cant see myself blogging about RPG related stuff unless its in connection with the Effigy stuff me and Daddy Grognard are collaborating on - ok he does the writing and I bounce ideas back if I'm sufficiently dosed with caffeine B-)

I'm still buying/collecting/painting the "little men" and got a few projects going that I dot between in that direction...........just so as all fifteen of you know where we're at, I might not be posting often, for long or relevantly to RPGing

Monday, 8 March 2010

Ground to a halt

My game with the resident medium sized person has ground to a crunching halt due to a combination of factors at least some of which arent appropriate for me to set down here.

As the old saying goes you can take a horse to water but you cant make it drink!

Still, like Football its only a game..............B-)

I'm of a mind to close this blog down - if I do to all those who have read/commented THANKS!

Sunday, 28 February 2010

SNFC Substitution - Halfling Pit Fight!

As theres no Saturday Night Fight Club this week I thought I'd offer this as a substitute (and because I hates Hobbitses) and I always liked the pit fighting part in the first Conan film.

Anybody ever play or remember A2 Secret of the Slavers Stockade?
Lets assume for a moment there arent a party of adventurers rampaging through the fort and the match goes ahead without intervention........

Well in Room 33 of the Upper Level - Servants Quarters the following match is happening.....

Halfling - Level 0 (1+1 HD) AC 10 - but lets give him 16 Dex (so AC 8)
D 1-3 Tableleg
hp: 7


A Badger - HD 1+2 AC 4 d 1-3 Bite

Round 1 initiative : Hobbit 4 + 2 for Dex reaction = 6, Badger 6 (5 with movement penalty)
Hobbit to hit: 16 damage : 3
Badger now has 5 hp - these little chaps are vicious in a tight spot!
Badger to hit: : 18 - hit - 2 damage
Hobbit also has 5 hp

Gladiators ready!
Round 2.....
Badger initiative:4
Hobbit initiative:3

Badger to hit: 6..................ohhhhh
Hobbit to hit: 16.......booooo ........1 damage
End of round 2 Hobbit 5 hp, Badger 4 hp........

The crowd of goblins and kobolds in the room are going wild.................

Round 3:
Hobbit initiative 5
Badger 5
both hit!.........Badger 3, Hobbit 1 (puny chairleg clubs for you!)
End of round three its all even again - Hobbit 2 hp, Badger 3 hp.........

Round four:
Initiative..........simultaneous again - 4 apiece!
Hobbit hits........badger...........misses..............
1 damage to the badger giving him 2 hp left and still in with a chance........

Round five:
Initiative: Badger 4 Hobbit 8 (!)
Both miss...........which will no doubt attact a few missiles from the crowd (they are kobolds and goblins after all!)

Round six:
Initiative: Hobbit - 3 Badger 4 (no doubt the Hobbits thinking about 3rd breakfast!)
Badger to hit........20.......
Hobbit to hit...........9.......

Damage to hobbit 6 ............-3 hp and gouting!
BADGER WINS.............despite having his back legs tied together in the adventure description and an initiative penalty!................

Now that surprised even me at the end!

So Mr Badger what are the good things in life?.................

Small Peoples Poll

Well - the Gnomes, Goblins and Ratfolk came out nearly neck and neck!

0 (yes thats zero votes) for the Hobbitses!

Oh how we hates them........and now we dont have to have them in our games either....oh no where did I put that Ring? B-)

Sunday, 21 February 2010

First XV

Welcome to Leopardi aka Dungeondad!

Its tea and cake time again.......B-)

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Training Dungeon Session 6 - The Final Enemy

Our intrepid heroes woke in the Ogres loot room and without prompting investigated the water area on Level 3

After some sensible ideas about exploring some underwater swimming (1/3 Con rounds to hold breath was done)
At the furthest duration before air ran out the locked grille was discovered.......

Round they trotted to directly above it (no prompting)

And investigated further - locked.grille......Grobsek the Goblin sneak thief/archer took a dip .......and after some fiddling with his trusty bent nail, adding bonuses and penalties the lock was sprung....

Grobsek was assisted out spluttering and coughing and Mach and Lukas went to do the strongman business and failed........I decided they'd succeed on 1-4 ......5 was rolled .........which set the tone for later on......

The grille was shifted on the second attempt and the final clay token retrieved...............hurrah ............high 5's for Team Thud and Blunder

We then went haring off to the puzzle/payoff room - at last a WM roll came up - adventurers - mwhahaha........

So - the puzzle was solved - and the GPs poured out - 1000gp - reaction was something like I would have to winning the Euromillions megarollover draw!

“We're going to sit and count them” was announced.............just as they were getting to the end of the pile (998) they all fell asleep.............

and woke to a room devoid of GPs........They'd been mugged by the Neutral MU and his thief henchman from level 1 who had been following their progress with interest and thought they'd make a few quick GPs.

I may have been a bit soft but thought they deserved a chance to at least ambush the Neutral MU and his sneaky friend using the multi level shaft which the NPCs wouldnt be aware of...........working on the assumption sleep lasts one turn and the baddies would have to bundle stuff into a sack nip back to their basecamp then out etc..........

A bit of dice rolling later calculating movements and rare use of the movement with not much strength laden with heavy sacks......added to Grobsek the Goblins helpful hints they managed to get into position to ambush by the entrance....

The party was split - three by the exit and two (Lukas and Rowenta skulking in the side passages) with Grobsek the Goblin lurking and keeping lookout.......

Grobsek wasnt spotted as the thief and wizard wandered past him followed ............until Max said he wanted him to try a backstab........made a 1.....

Lukas and Rowenta swiped at the wizard with surprise and both missed.............

A knife fight ensued between Grobsek wielding long knives (d1-5) and the thief with two daggers........

a 16 was rolled - enough to hit the thief – the once per session roll of the d30 for damage was nominated..............1.............

Wicked DM nearly rolling on floor chortling uncontrollably...............

Lukas and Rowenta won initiative and Lukas got a 20 – verified as rolled properly as it came to rest against the DMs screen........

Massive damage to the now ex wizard............chest critical

The thief defeated Grobsek in the knife fight and started backing away...........

The three by the entrance had heard the scuffle and I decided it'd take the rest of that round to get there and they could do something next round..........

Hurrah - TT&B won initiative as the thief turned to leg it with the sack full of loot...............

Glancing blow from Fergus with a javelin..........

Up stepped Mach.............we were standing next to each other by now - new smoky transparent d20 was rolled.....the Dice Gods smiled!


........4 got on the d6 plus Machs impressive strength bonus (+3) - doubled ...........14 damage ..........splot.........sack of gold recovered and TD exited -

I decided on a GP split for all involved and the faffing about with magic items started..........despite Lukas wanting everything the kindly DM pointed out some were more suited to certain classes than others..........
Next up – the big bad kingdoms of Albion await!

Sunday, 14 February 2010

Goblinoids Win

The goblinoids won by a tiny margin on the poll - which means I'm going to have to use both.

Thanks for your votes and comments good people of the Blogopolis!

Wednesday, 10 February 2010


The above Frank Frazetta picture always caught my eye as the epitome of berserking barbarian hero

I dont know about you good people out there - personally I've never been happy with any of the published Berserker/Battlerager apart from maybe the WD Articles one which has been given a few tweaks in previous games as follows:

Requirements: Str:15 Dex:11 Con:15
Level Advancement: As Ranger
Armour: Chainmail or lighter
Sheild: Yes - but gnawed on then thrown away when berserk/raging
Hit dice: d10 (to 11th level)

Races: Human,Dwarf, Half Orc and Half Ogre

Must spend one round chewing on shield,favourite nail etc....
+2 to hit and +1 PER LEVEL damage for duration of battle madness
Lasts one round per level plus one round - must make a WIS save to end fury early or will attack nearest being - including friendlies (!)
Will carry on fighting to -10 hp (or death depending on ruleset)

Thats the bare bones from memory - it has been play tested extensively over the last 2o years and works ............B-)

Happy Slaying!

Formidable Fourteen!

Welcome to Joe the Lawyer - I've stumbled across your blog previously - I hope you find something of interest in this little corner of the blogscape!

Before I'm reminded from certain quarters about refreshments - hope this is sufficient!

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Bakers Dozen

Welcome to The Acrobatic Flea to my little fortified watchtower in the Blogopolis

Have some tea and bikkits because its that time of day!

Mystery Man Slain - Training Dungeon Session 5

Following the Molotov-ing of the Ghouls TT&B rested in the puzzle room next to the Potion Room.........

After some mapping recap we wandered back to the Spartan Orcs room - empty – and, not proceeding very carefully wandered past the shaft and followed the passageway to the Bugbear bait room ........- harking back to the Carrion Crawlers it was mentioned to look round carefully this time............spotted the door............looking and listening was forgotten and the door was booted open to be confronted with the remaining five Orc Spartans in shield-wall formation with the Orc witchdoctor behind

- I've decided shield-wall gives a further +1 bonus to AC from being protected by the chaps adjacent.

The Bugbear brothers/triplets were skulking to the left of the door in the corner as the map is looked at........

No further mention of looking, adopting any form of formation was mentioned or anything else apart from seeing there was only five orcs including the witchdoctor - who started doing a chant - Lukas, Mach, Galathrun and Fergus were nominated to charge in with very mixed results.....
Mach smote one to the ground as did Lukas.....Fergus missed...........

Galathrun the Destroyer of Worlds Goblins and Centipedes at last showed he was mortal - taking a critical for maximum damage and going to -5 hp...........and expired several rounds later........the combat lasted seven rounds before anybody was free to do anything other than fight........

Meanwhile the Bugbear brothers crept out and surprised the non fighter members of TT&B - Ashnut fell to two bashes with spiky maces to -8 hp(and also expired) and Elyra was bashed to -4 hp.

Which left Rowenta and Grobsek the Goblin back to the brave warriors fighting the Spartan Orcs - another round of attacks ensued - the Orcs rolling low this time - one minor hit - with a reply of another Orc downed leaving three...........

To be fair it did occur the Bugbear Bros were now behind the fighter types - and Lukas and Fergus disengaged - leaving Mach to fight the three remaining Spartans!

Rowenta and Grobsek managed to hurt a Bugbear to about half hps between them - Rowenta got bashed back to half hp

(I'm seriously thinking of making her into an Amazon cleric of some sort, eschewing St Cuthbert)

Return of hits in both directions on the two bold warriors and the Bugbears........

The orcs all missed Mach - with him hitting one back with a critical 20 - felling it - down to two.........

The bold warriors on the bugbears got hit to 1hp apiece - but Fergus wounded his in return.........Lukas dropped his new shiny sword.........

Rowenta missed her Bugbear and got hit to 1hp.......the Bugbear took a glancing hit from a barbed Goblin arrow........the goblin being at a bit of a penalty firing into melee at a bigger target

Mach felled another Orc - and got wounded to 2hp in return

(The intrepid heroes now had about 12 hp between them - 6 of which were the Goblin archers............B-).............)

Lukas got a 20 - critical - and smote his Bugbear to the floor..............Fergus wounded his and was missed in return - the bugbears had hit a low rolling patch........

Rowenta finished her bugbear - and Elyra remembered her Potion of Extra Healing and took half of it - making her Con -5 roll ......her cons only 10

To cut a long story short..........the Bugbear Bros and Orcs were dispatched .........barely ........Lukas ended up on -2 hp and got a dose of the Potion.

Two "dead" Ashnut and Galathrun the Mystery Man................

The Golden Chalice necessary to free the trapped but friendly Clerics was recovered and some resting, curing and mourning for fallen companions was done ...

Back to the Clerics on level 2 we went - who offered to help out with the Kobolds and the Zombies - I shan't describe it in vast detail - having SIX clerics to turn the Zombies it was a bit one sided - the remaining Kobolds including the Witchdoctor were all slept.........the only major problem and star of the whole combat was the Ogre Zombie who battered the biggest Cleric to a quivering bloody pulp along with hurting Lukas and one of the lesser clerics.............Rowenta took pity on Lukas and did a cure.........

that done ........we investigated the now Kobold Hall (carefully) and the switch was spotted ...... I had to use the on/off principle of a real switch to illustrate the it got pressed it twice ...........and Lukas got speared.........3-18 damage with save vs Dex for half dmage which he only half (6)

Back to the real life light switch and the suggestion if you wanted to protect something with a trap operated by a switch would you leave it on or off?

On ....was the reply............hurrah .............the switch was switched off and the traps be confronted with a double locked door..........

You will recall here all the thieves were slain by the Bugbears

Fifteen minutes of dithering followed till I started rolling wandering monsters behind the screen.............and dropped the helpful hint via Elyra ......what normally opens last we were getting somewhere...................

So Elyra and orange cat familiar were sent off for keys - they took a while - finding and freeing Ragnar the Skald imprisoned in the Oubliette then dawdling back after searching the bodies!

There they rested – some more permanently than others – it nearly being the end of the excellent Daddy Grognard Training Dungeon – for beginning players of all ages and sizes.........B-)

Sunday, 7 February 2010

What Happens when you call your local Warlord "Stupid Idiot"

This is taken a bit out of context compared to my other posts but I'm still chuckling now....

So there we are neophyte adventurers wandering down the road .....

In the spirit of Old Schoolness I thought it might be a good opportunity for them to meet some of the movers and shakers in their part of the world on an incognito mission to the Oracle in the Forest....

So, they met Uhtred, Warlord of Mercia and the (soon to be) Queen AEthelflaed who were having a bit of wagon trouble....(good excuse to introduce attribute check xps)

Lukas helped Uhtred mend the wagon - and called him "stupid idiot" ...because he kept calling him "laddie".........
I really didnt think anybody would call a "heavily muscled warrior in his 40s, with lots of scars, stripped to the waist holding the corner of a wagon up" - "idiot"
I give two chances as well to revise what was going to be said........

So after a couple of punches (two of many possible multiple attacks) and stunning damage to Lukas they accompanied the strangers to the Kings Head in Melford......

Oh well at least they got noticed........B-)

Dice Bag!

I was reading a discussion somewhere about dicebags - and picked this little beauty up for less than £5 inc shipping from the US on Ebay.

Its listed as a 5x7 Tarot bag - check out Annabelles Ebay Shop if anybodys interested.

Starting Hit Points

I've decided to houserule that characters start with their Con score as physical hit points at 1st level to save them being mauled/trampled to death by domestic animals.
This represents the real "toughness" damage they can take.

Its not quite the +20 hp kicker at 1st level Hackmaster gives and to my mind makes already frail first level characters more survivable - most can now take a couple of good whacks. The appropriate HD is then gained at subsequent levels as "non physical" HPs.

Of course this means corporeal monsters have more hit points as well......

Floaty things like wraiths use their listed Int/Wis as a base then add the appropriate HD.

I think this may actually work without wrecking the mechanics too much......B-)

Friday, 5 February 2010

Terrific Twelfth

Welcome Kathulu .......I hope you mind something remotely interesting in my little corner of the Blogscape

Biscuits keep certain people happy..........B-)

Wednesday, 3 February 2010


These chaps from the Wychwood Brewery are what I always see Hobgoblins as being like.

I'm therefore going to remove Orcs pig-faced or otherwise altogether and have a general lump of goblinoids consisting of Goblins/Hobgoblins/Bugbears

Is that heresy I wonder?!........B-)

Tuesday, 2 February 2010

Enlightened Eleven...

A warm welcome to my corner of the blogopolis to Dungeonmum!

Before ancient vaults reminds me of my lack of hospitality again heres some tea and bikkits........

Sunday, 31 January 2010

Sisters of the Axe

After coming across this picture on SirLarkins Pendragon campaign write-up I decided Sisters of the Axe might be a cool thing to have in Albion...

More to follow - but no Tigers unfortunately.......wolves maybe......

Orc Spartans - Training Dungeon Session 4

Team Thud and Blunder session 4 while Mummy took the car to the car hospital..........9.30am prompt start.......

We left the clerics room and went to the shaft - having carefully scouted about - the whole of TT&B decided to creep to the shaft room........Lukas failed and banged his sheild off a stone wall........
This caused a bit of consternation both to the bold adventurers and the kobolds who started creeping up the corridor ......

I decided the first couple would be Held by the helpful clerics seeing no reason a hold person cant go through a wall of force....

Down to TD level 3 - Galathrun and Ashnut the gnome carefully scouted the "hall of many ways" (35) .......up came the rest of TT&B - a bit more scouting was done and it was decided to amble along to the corridor going to the orcs room (30) - without scouting - and bimble down it...........not surprisingly the sentry saw them....called his fellows and a shieldwall and flanking move was set up by the Orc Witchdoctor
(I love WD's!)

Galathrun the Destroyer of Worlds, Goblins and Centipedes and Lukas the Disemboweller* took the first rank on, losing initiative because the orcs had spears.....Galathrun got hit and Lukas got a critical hit to the chest for maximum damage - I decided an instant death save was required - which was made - phew
They felled exactly one orc between them.............the orc shieldwall's effectiveness being inversely proportional to our heroes effort against the goblins

Lukas retreated for some healing .........and left Galathrun the Destroyer to the hummed tune of Brave Sir Robin - ok he was on -1 hp......B-)
Rowenta stepped in with a cure ...........Galathrun wounded one of the five orcs forming the this point the kindly DM asked was anybody else apart from Galathrun and Lukas going to do anything or just stand and watch................plink ............a lightbulb moment..........sleep on the the wizardette...

9 was rolled four of the five orcs fell asleep - the remaining one made his morale check and hefted his shield and spear in a Spartan manner.........and the door was held long enough for the flanking group of the bigger chaps to be recalled ..........four of them.........with the shaman attempting hold person on Galathrun the made was a good day for saving throws..........B-)

Lukas reentered the fray with some shiny new hit points and a critical was applied to an orc - starting at the left arm and ending in 26 damage (cut in half *)
Still the Spartan orcs held - another hit was landed on Lukas in retaliation a mere 2 damage -

Galathrun felled a wounded one and Ashnut pitched in with his sling

The orcs morale held - Spartiate-like - and two more were felled - with no hits on our heroes........

TT&B gained the initiative .......the final orc was smitten by Lukas to -3 hp and the WDoctor legged it.........I made his selection of spells slightly less than my favourite kobold as more a supporting magic role rather than a lead from the front.............the bodies were searched and assorted equipment looted - including 3 molotov oil bombs.............

They didnt bother dispatching the sleeping orcs - or at least it wasnt mentioned - we have had several conversations about I wasnt going to assume he was creeping/listening/searching etc unless he said so..............

The orc W/D legged it to see if he can do a deal with the bugbears.........

Sooo..........we then went back and investigated the right passage off the hall ..........leading to the "payoff room" (36)..........multiple attempts at listenng....nothing......yet more attempts at listening at two of the four doors - nothing - we tried to break the door down - locked - we tried hitting the lock with our sword.......the sword got stuck in the door..............

Elyra rather sweetly suggested maybe one of the more light fingered types should pick the b****y lock.............which Ashnut managed........
The room was entered to a bit of head scratching - although the conclusion was arrived at the tokens went in the of "those" conversations followed .....

"I put the tokens in the slots"
"Nothing happens"
"Why not"
"Perhaps you need all of them in a particular order"
"Oh yeah - we swap them round and try again"
"Nothing happens"
"Why not"
"Why do you think?"
"We havnt got all of them"...................

Having decided against - eventually.............. leaving the tokens we had in the slots...........

Off they went to the potion room (26) ......and a bit of potion testing occured ......

A potion of gaseous form was tipped onto the floor to "see if it did anything"
The others were tested by randomly nominated people who were then expected to hand the bottle over to Lukas having tested them......this was given short shrift by anybody who tested them........

Possible uses for oil of depetrification caused a long "blip" ............Elyra then expounded (in her role as DMs hint device and having 16 Int) length...........on the possible uses of oil apart from drinking,keeping weapons well oiled and axles greased or lighting lamps with...............and as was put forth tipping on the floor to see if it made it slippery.............
We left the room with much eye rolling and head shaking by the Hermione clone and discovered ........

ta-dah! The puzzle room.(27)

Being nearly ten he is familiar enough fortunately with puzzles to spot what it was so I just gave a straight Int save to spot a bit that might be moved then a Str save to move it round....
Also todays session was a spur of the moment 25 mins before thing so had to improvise........even using the attribute saves it took a good 15 minutes .....

Hurrah - progress had been made - the puzzle revealed its secret ...............still the wandering monster table was devoid of rolls apart from adventurers...................

Round the looping passageway to the central hall we first scouted..........surprising the rats and nipping through their room (37) while spiking the door shut .......surprise roll ............they managed to surprise the two men and a goblin who I described and he still didnt catch on who it was because of the Goblin..........
An Int save on a 1 revealed the newcomers to be Fergus, Mach and the remaining Goblin archer (Grobsek).......who had been converted using an ancient WD article

Next exit off the hall it was decided to investigate the ghoul room................mwhahah...............

But we listened.......and heard movement ..........the door was booted open and they were advanced on by grey skinned creatures in rags with sharp teeth and talons.........after a bit of being scared witless - I decided the clerics would be able to spot putrescent undead as part of their training and both .........failed to turn..........

A moment of blind panic ensued ............I decided a bit of a "time out" was necessary to analyse all the dubious tactical choices being put forward

In the end it was decided to secure the door and retreat ...............initiative was rolled.............a draw ......the cruel DM decided one person would have to behave menacingly to dissuade them while another secured the door................into the breach stepped.............Lukas the Shredded One.............
4 hits from 6 attacks took him to -4 hp and paralysed but the door was secured.........temporarily.............

They retreated to the hallway of many exits - having explored a few this session............Lukas paralysed and got a couple of cures from the clerics while Elyra took charge .........having the most intelligence...........I then had Elyra feed him information because he has Ashnut the Gnome to run as well..............

So it was decided the molotovs would be lit and lobbed at the ghouls as they came a-hunting...........the molotovs were given to a random selection of people (Elyra and Ashnut)............the ghouls broke the door down in two rounds ..........yes it took them that long really............and they advanced menacingly ............

Heroes initiative and the molotovs sailed into the passage in a holocaust of flame and tinkling direct hit (2d6) one indirect (1d6) getting a total of six ghouls............four fell on impromptu pyres ...........Grobsek the Goblin plied his bow and Ashnut his sling - another two fell and the others ran away towards the bugbear lair.............hmmm.........where the Orc shaman is.........B-)

Dragging a paralysed and scraped Lukas with them it was mooted to be lunchtime and thats where we left it...........our brave heroes barricaded themselves in the puzzle room to relearn spells and paralysis to wear off...............

Thursday, 28 January 2010

Food Glorious Food

Since there have been spurious and unfounded reports in certain areas of the Blogopolis I dont offer my erudite and learned readers food (all 10 of you!) refreshments.........

Hopefully the above will suffice ..........B-)

Sunday, 24 January 2010

Experience Points

After long agonising about experience points ("levelling up" as the resident medium sized person calls it) while doing Daddy Grognards Training Dungeon for which the party dont accrue xps.
I decided it was time to come up with an xp system that didnt....

1) Involve loads of book-keeping.....hes nearly 10 makes neat maps but gets distracted (very) easily!
2) Didnt involve awarding 1GP = 1XP which I've not done for ages - monetary loot is reward enough in itself
3) Doesnt involve excessive xps for magic items gained - bearing in mind a +1 cloak to a 1st level thief/rogue is most of a level
4) Doesnt involve calculating an xp per hit point value (see 1)...DM/CK laziness on my part...

I hit on the following:

1HD = 100 xp - from Philotomy Jurament's page - this I think is fair and averages out the book-keeping involved for whose charater did what and when.
Halved if driven off or captured

500xp per plus of magic item be it misc magic or weapon (plus 50% if +1/+2 vs dungeon masters.....)

500xp per dose for one shot items such as potions

100xp per spell level LEARNED and COPIED

100xp per spell level from scroll when USED in game as opposed to shoved in a backpack and sold later .....

50xp x number of levels of party members for non combat encounters important to the adventure speaking nicely to an NPC and they garner a USEFUL piece of information to the quest.....loosely extrapolated from The Rusty Battleaxe..(thanks!)

Comments/critiques as always welcome.....yes I am aware of trading gp for xp for carousing after adventures ......but my player is 10 ......lets not go there B-)

Saturday, 23 January 2010

Terrific Ten

Welcome to biopunk the latest soul to encounter this corner of the blogopolis - thanks for your comment!

@ Ancient Vaults - you're right - no stilton I'm afraid - will this do for now? B-)

Friday, 22 January 2010

Poll Goblinoids or Beastmen

I'm torn with indecision between the two for my game in Albion (qv)....

I dont know whether to go with the traditional Goblinoids or the more chaotic warped Beastheaded Men.......

Albion - an overview

Daddy Grognards Training Dungeon is nearly done - one quest object to recover - and then Team Thud and Blunder are bound for the warlike kingdoms of Albion.

In an earlier post I said I had to come up with an idea a nearly ten year old might engage with - so was Albion conceived for the following reasons.

1) Free map, easily identifiable which can be redrawn into Kingdoms...(Saxon,Celtic,Norse and "other")......ideas to be firmed up....the party are first level and not likely to go far....
2) Fits with the influences said young person has thus far encountered. (see previous link there wont be any Kung Fu Robin Hood stuff.....B-)
3) A good excuse for me as DM/CK/GM to introduce all sorts of elements and ideas from diverse sources

Now I'm not really a top down GM in any shape of form - unlike my good pal Daddy Grognards VERY impressive campaign history post. .....I dont intend doing anything of the sort apart from an overview and then add to it from the ground up - this is how I've always done it and it suits my style of game. People, settlements and locations take shape as the adventurers encounter them from a page of jotted notes.....
The same can be said of ruins/dungeons - historically in the setting the only possible source of ruins/dungeons is the now withdrawn equivalent of the "Romans", the Dwarves who live in what approximates as Lancashire on a real world UK map..B-) with more (un)natural sites being around before the "Romans" appeared

The "Romans" withdrew xx years ago long before the PCs started out.....I'll fill in the xx as and when I need to.

The country is split into several kingdoms - of which the PCs are natives of one - they hail from a village - in the Kingdom of Mercia - in other words the middle bit!
I havnt got much further than that, but envisage points of light even in the more civilised areas giving the opportunity for things best not spoken of to lurk....

I need to do a map of the Kingdom of Mercia at some point with a nod in the direction of whats on the Borders.....where naturally there is a Keep/Fort on the Borderlands (slightly amended) which has an eye to expanding into a Haunted Keep - from Dragonsfoot - again tweaked a little.

There are all manner of unpleasantnesses - Undead,Dark Druids, Brigands, Evil Wizards and Sorceresses, Norsemen,Celts,Picts and beasties of all stripes....
On which note gentle reader(s) feel free to vote!

More to follow as things develop.

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Noble Nine!

Welcome to Rob L the latest poor soul to wander into my little corner of the blogosphere!

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Eastern Kobold Bloc - Training Dungeon Session 3

We start the action in the Zombie Masters room(24) .....and left soon after no mention of searching the Cleric or the cowering zombies as predicted - we then did a wander with a nod in the direction of scouting back to the ogre lair........(shame about not looting the Cleric really looking at his AC I'd decided he'd got half plate and a Dex bonus)

The hall of the Ogrelord was now empty apart from the six zombies - now under kobold control milling about......... (they'd been told to do this to spring the trap as below......)
Witchdoctor in left passage as you look at TD map with the solitary slinger, elite kobolds concealed behind the jutting out bit as a mobile reserve........the ogre and kobold chief concealed in the passageway to the goodly clerics chapel..(18).....

All orchestrated from his vantage point by the witchdoctor.....couldnt have worked better.....apart from one thing..

TT&B emerged and walked right into the trap, taking the diagonal passage towards where the good clerics they were crossing the hall the W/Doctor blasted Elyra to -3 hp with a magic was decided Rowenta being quite statuesque could drag/carry her

the elite guard circled round to fling darts into the back of Team Thud and Blunder.

The witchdoctor snuck off to see if he could "acquire" the other zombies - he did...........B-)

The ogre and kobold chief backing the boss up with stabbing spear ............surprised them............splat..........large spiked club swung with surprise hits Lukas to -3 hp

This left Galathrun and Ashnut facing the Ogre and Kobold chief........all I can say is good job gnomes get -4 to be hit by ogres .....Mr Ogre needed 20, total not natural to hit him!.

A storm of flung darts came in wounding Fergus and Rowenta - for whom the only option was to close with the elite guards.........

Galathrun,Ashnut the ogre and kobold all missed (kobold was stabbing from between the ogres legs with a spear)

Back to the other end of the corridor - Fergus was hit to -4 hp, remained conscious (made his Con save and carried on battling at a heavy penalty......)

Galathrun and Ashnut carried on while Lukas - who also made his Con save to remain conscious applied a bandage to get him to -1 hp

Now the bit where HTA get lucky and avoid a TPK by the skin of their teeth...........Galathrun plying his shortsword and dagger combo masterfully got a 20 - yes I saw it rolled - the d30 rule was thought of - we got an 8 - plus Galathruns impressive damage bonus under C&C rules (+3) , total 11, doubled for a critical = 22 damage to the ogre of 26 hp I rolled ..........not bad..............4hp left

things were looking hairy at the other end of the corridor ..........apart from I'd forgotten in the excitement that wizards can share their familiars hp - and thought it fair to summon the book to see if it made a difference...............Marmalade has 4hp...........Elyra was on -4..............I decided Marmalade would give her all 4 hp so she was at least conscious Elyra on 0hp and Marmalade on 0hp................Lukas on -1 now because of bandaging, Fergus on -4. Rowenta on her last few hp, Galathrun and Ashnut both ok..................

Fergus took a bit of overkill from the witchdoctor's second 2d4+2 magic missile (3rdlvl WD) who was now back with his new shuffly friends..........-12 hp...........splurgle.........
I did decide that Fergus having made his roll to come back would go and find Mach and try to persuade/shame him into another go - which worked.....more on that later.

Rowenta smote one of the four elite guards attacking her to the them pause for thought.............

Ashnut and Galathrun both made their Dex saves to switch - losing initiative, Galathrun missed,Ashnut clouted the ogre with his club, rolling between the ogres legs 6 damage..............hurrah for TT&B............crash went the ogre - the kobold chief didnt fancy his chances with the Mystery Man and the Gnome, made his dex save to avoid the falling ogre and legged it round the corner

So now we had a battle at one end of the corridor - Rowenta hit another elite guard but didnt smite him to the floor, four misses for the kobolds, Elyra gasped out her last sleep - got 8 HD worth and put the lot of them to sleep ............Rowenta spotted a wall of decaying zombies advancing towards them behind which was a capering and very happy Witchdoctor..............

Even Lukas at this point decided discretion might be the better part of valour so our intrepid neophytes withdrew/limped/straggled chased by the odd dart up the passageway to the Trapped Clerics (18) Chapel......which they entered......after pointing out it wasnt really socially acceptable to rummage through the clerics cells.........a bit of meaningful social interaction occured and an exchange of news - the Clerics offered their services in battling the Zombies after being told of the shift in power in exchange for a quest............spells recovered and healed up some hours later............they went up to the room that contains the shaft to level three.............................and had a bit of a video game moment deciding that finishing level 2 was required first..............despite the senior clerics words of wisdom that zombies and kobolds might be too strong for an "I know what I'm doing and zombies arent very tough"...........we headed back to the what is henceforth the Kobold Hall (15).............ambling past the passageway in which they got bottled up the first time - a storm of darts hit them from the side - on they went - with the kobolds encroaching.............they got to the bottom to see two ranks of zombies and a capering witchdoctor...............Rowenta dropped her holy symbol on a 1..........forwards shuffled the zombies........................Galathrun and Elyra both started casting glances over their shoulders along with the suggestion of " this REALLY isnt a good idea" they ran back past a dart storm to the chapel - who were pleased to see them........again......... after so short a time ...............a bit more free healing was done........and level three was breached..........B-)

Lukas and Galathrun manfully and half-elffully (is that a word?!...B-)........) battered the door down - made their Dex saves to stay on their feet and were attacked by a swarm of chitin............a long combat ensued with the two of them in the door (we've learned about doors and frontage at least) a few nips by the centipedes were got in - five in total - all the saves at +4 were made and we explored as far as the hallway to the north, the blocked passage wasnt noted as no mention of careful looking was made.................

At which point the medium sized persons attention span expired and after a dialogue about where to rest – Team Thud and Blunder ascended the shaft and went back to the Clerics.........there we left it we are the moment............

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

'Eroic Eight

Welcome to James from the Underdark Gazette - good to see you....and nice blog!

Monday, 18 January 2010

Magnificent Seven

Welcome to bat- the most recent addition to the bunch of good people who read my infrequently posted "stuff" and publisher of cool magic items beasties and other goodness on a near daily basis as far as I can tell....B-)

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Obituary for an Evil Cleric - Team Thud and Blunder session 2

TT&B left the wolf room (8) "wanderers" again and visited the spider room (1)...........which was enough to do away with its poison bite of Mach the Horrendously Strong......who failed his Wis save to come back - and didnt - at least not this session........

Two small gems were recovered............

We finally encountered the wizard and thief(10)......a magic mouth told them to go away - so they dithered - then the "mystery man" was told to open the door a fraction and look (he successfully listened first)..................there then followed a long conversation about what could be seen in a room if a door was opened just to peep through...........resolved by the use of a real life door as a prop ..(this is one of the great things about gaming with kids - they think their characters have all sorts of innate abilities, usable at will)..........Galathrun and Lukas emerged into the room to be confronted by the wizard behind his desk and the thief skulking by the door (who wasnt spotted)...............(luckily for Lukas it didnt kick off or he would have got the sneak hit)

The wizard said - "Go away minions and mind your own business"...... so they did.............ok I thought being a kindly and just hostilities were initiated on either side so we'll leave it there for now......

We then investigated the goblin lair(2) of which there were 4 archers left - who positioned themselves cleverly in the two corners of the room opposite the door, having heard the party lumbering round, spiked it shut with whatever was to hand and took up defensive positions - arrows nocked.

A brief interlude followed while TT&B tried to get the door open...........5 minutes later the dice gods smiled on the remote chance and the door was splintered open to a storm of goblin arrows...well 8 in total, 4 hits...Lukas and Galathrun were both hit being the strong chaps opening the door.....they then split into two to go after the goblins - Lukas and Rowenta in one corner, Fergus and Galathrun the other - 3 goblins were slain and some randomly generated loot garnered.....
Rowenta used both her cures and Fergus one of his and most folk were mended........

Hurrah but a bit of moping about Mach......a bit of randomly generated Goblin treasure - duly written on notes sheet was snapped up.........lottery win - noted on neatly kept loot paper.....

We then went and re-investigated the "slime room"(5)having had a conversation about not ordering clerics to heal but asking them nicely ......and the view expressed "on Pukemon I dont do heal till they have 1hp".......

My reply somewhat exasperated reply- "Forget pukemon - most people wont carry on on 1hp"..........Pukemon has a lot to answer for it seems.......still we seem to be making headway.....

The secret panel was spotted by Fergus...... - Lukas and Elyra having taken some damage from a swim in the slime pool = one unhappy wizardette.....

We had some dithering on the platform around what to do with the locked panel and how to get it open......decided we couldnt be a**ed to think about it and expressed an interest in the shaft the gnome had looked at..........

Carefully ignoring the rusty iron spike we used our grapnel attached to the side of the pit and rope to descend......Elyra had a near miss but they all got down safely......

Out of the hall and onto TD Level 2- we went "up" and around the corridor to the statue room (25)...........more dithering ........eventually we decided to try firing a crossbow bolt at the statues arms.........nothing......(not surprisingly!!!)

"Perhaps the join implies they're meant to be moved" suggested the soggy and unhappy MU - who really was having a bad day in the TD so far........

Hurrah - we got the skeleton warrior - who got some awful attack rolls and failed to hit even one of his statues.....Lukas cleverly used his warhammer and the d30 rule without prompting and the skeleton warrior was bone splinters...............HTA took the sword (amended to a large broadsword of masterful quality... +1 to hit and damage)...........I dont want to overload them with magic before hitting the mean kingdoms of Albion ...........

They carelessly completely ignored the antique half plate armour as well..........

Next the gnome was sent to scout along the passageway leading to the ogre hall (16)..............came back with a report of "a figure at the end of the passage" having made his skulkiness roll............

We then boldly marched up to the kobold sentry - who alerted his fellows - which led to a bit of a dialogue about "a figure" meaning human and therefore friendly, I wasnt about to describe it if he didnt ask and he didnt - legged it down past the Zombies room .....paused trap got set off and we decided to turn and fight.............
More dithering and a rush by a a dozen kobolds - the bigger ones in reserve with the ogre - (which the party were unaware of)

Elyra the Unhappy to the rescue (again) with a sleep - did ten of them -all dispatched sliced with shiny new sword and the other one legged it.

Then the zombie trap was sprung - having passed their room - (with nowhere to go I thought I'd reward the Too Much Effort Cant Be A*sed with a little surprise) - however the dice gods REALLY were smiling on TT&B this week ..............the zombies shuffled out ............BOTH Fergus and Rowenta succeeded in turning them at a penalty because of the evil cleric

(I decided they got half each and being in slightly different spots with different lines of sight) ...

(the first ever roll of the d12 came up 12 - followed by 10)..........anyway............half the zombies went back in the room ....away...pushing past their creator...and nowhere to go...............the other half shambled along the corridor ...........into where the ogre and reserves were waiting in ambush.......

Back to the room - a moment of tactical insight occured which is that flawless I really cant find fault with.......Lukas, Galathrun and the Gnome Ashnut were nominated to go into the room and smite the cleric while Fergus and Rowenta tried to counter any undoing of their turning efforts.................

The idea seems to have been got from some browser game of other that thieves are good at fighting...........most odd..........

The cleric decided he'd rather regain control of what was left of his undead shield - not unreasonably - and succeeded with the half dozen he could now see - only to be countered by BOTH the party clerics again.........who both scored more than he did..........cowering zombies............cleric couldnt do anything having tried to get his followers in order.......

Large broadsword non proficient was swung - 20 - critical - and a natural 20 is always a natural 20 after all - 24 damage to Evil Cleric in one go......gout, gout splurgle....

Much rushing round and an impromptu cabaret ensued.......he was that pleased .............

Evil cleric was dispatched permanently no chances to beg or grovel for mercy .....................and thats where we left it - because tea time happened

– and Mummys word drowns out all others and must be obeyed....;-)