Saturday, September 26, 2009

Mantipedes, you say?

I guess they're getting to know us at The Source... They even spelled it right!

I've got to quit posting these logs three or four weeks after last playing 'cause, you know, I'm getting old, and my memory fuzzy. Plus, this last time, I tried to reorganize my gaming briefcase, and it didn't work out so well... I ended up losing the piece of paper on which all the characters' names were written; not so good.

So, I apologize in advance those of you with new characters last time---feel free to fill in what I've forgotten.

Playing this time was Will with Melvin the Fighting Man; Will's wife Susan (a first time gamer!) with a Cleric; Trevor with Narpet the Magic User; my son Max with Fireskull the skeleton Fighting Man; my brother Josh with an elf (remember the Holmes mindset now, so almost race-as-class); Chad, an old friend (like, from elementary school) with a Fighting Man; Carl, fresh from Dragonsfoot, with a Magic User. Trevor still had Octague the evil Cleric charmed from the last session, but I think Melvin let Alan One Hit, his surprisingly robust hireling, have the day off. Geez, when I look at that, it was a big, noisy party...

Some Highlights
  • They really wanted to find the kobolds who'd ambushed them last time, but no luck...
  • Narpet, hoping someday to become a lich, is hoping that Octague was looking for something in the dungeon that might help him achieve that goal. After an inconclusive conversation, he did, however, agree to paint his face white, "In honor of Father Orcus..."
  • After kicking in a door, they attracted some ghosts. Most of the party failed their saving throws and took off in fear, hiding behind broken furniture in the room beyond the door. The ghosts went away eventually, and Fireskull, being undead and therefore not subject to being afraid of ghosts, got bored. He went wandering about nearby corridors while the others recovered, breaking down locked doors and shouting "It's just me!" to the rest of the party. He discovered some stairs leading down and, amazingly, was unmolested by wandering monsters...
  • They found what appears to have been some sort of arena, with risers, a dias, and six locked grates in the floor. Peering into the grates, they saw sparkly things, but also heard slight moans and the scrape of metal and bones. In true old school style, they decided to leave well enough alone for now.
  • Through a secret door in a nearby corridor, they found a strange, felted hallway running behind the seats in the auditorium, with small holes at head height. For servants of House Gristlehelm to spy, or worse, on guests?
  • In a distant room that appeared to have been part parlor, part prison, they roused the ghost of a once-beautiful young woman, horribly disfigured by torture, who attacked them by flinging freezing blood from her wounds. Susan immediately said her cleric was going to fall to her knees and pray to send the ghost's soul onward. I thought this was so cool---she didn't really know about "turning", so she just tried what seemed natural for a cleric to do. I gave her three chances, getting harder each time: 2d6, 9 or higher/11 or higher/three dice, all the same number. It didn't work, but that wasn't the point (I mean, she is only first level, after all!) See, in the room description, I had written: "Mutilated, broken, maligned, wrathful. A cleric of a loving GOD might be able to lay this tragic wraith to rest." So, there you go... Defeated only through the agency of Melvin's magic sword, a diary found amongst her bones revealed her to have been Gwyneth the Pale, beloved daughter and heir to House Hyacinth, mortal foes of House Gristlehelm. If I'm remembering correctly, they took her skull with them, though it may only have been the diary.
  • In one room, a pool was bubbling up from somewhere, filling about a third of the space. The wet walls and floor were crumbling and corroded. Strange movements and sounds near the pool turned out, on further investigation, to be literally hundreds of thousands of centipedes. When someone came too near the pool, furious motion in the swarm resolved into two roughly man-shaped forms composed entirely of centipedes, which came lurching out towards the characters. They managed to scatter the mantipedes long enough for Narpet, using his ring of water walking, to skim out on the pool and find the robed bones of what was apparently once a magic user. They left the room with a potion of healing and a scroll.
  • And then there was the column of garbage...

Announcement: Otherness, Session 8

Otherness, Session 8 will be played, well, I guess tomorrow(!) at The Source Comics and Games, from 12-4. It's a Free Campaign, which means anyone can show up and play at any time. We have four confirmed players, one of whom is brand new, so they just may survive!

The depths of GRISTLEHELM will be further explored. Our intrepid adventurers ran into some odd stuff last time, and they're only just getting started...

Friday, September 18, 2009

Fight On! 6 released

I'm a bit tardy in posting this, but Fight On! 6 is available for consumption. And trust me, you will want to consume...

Dedicated to legendary publisher of Alarums and Excursions, Lee Gold, it is packed with delicious old school goodness. Some highlights:

  • Erol Otus Art Challenge color-entry Grand Prize-winning cover by Mark Allen. Never have stirges seemed so cool...
  • Sandbox Prepartation by the "Chicago Wizard" Mike Shorten
  • I Need a Dungeon Right Now! by Jeff Reints
  • Another installation of Baz Blatt's Tekumel-themed The Devil's in the Details (for which I had the honor to illustrate an ahoggya...)
  • Another massive level for Fight On! community-created mega-dungeon The Darkness Beneath
  • Enharza, City of Thieves by crazily creative Argentinian Santiago Luis "Zulgyan" Ortis
  • World Creating as a Hobby by Lee Gold (who should certainly know something about it...)
  • Naked Went the Gamer guest editorial by The Forge creator and indie-game iconoclast Ron Edwards, which has, not surprisingly, garned some controversy amongst participants in the Old School Renaissance.

So? What the hell are you doing still reading this? Go and buy it!

(and then go check out EVERY SINGLE LINK in this post---you won't regret it...)