Posts Tagged ‘Hucid’

Return to Losnoth

Friday, December 18th, 2015

Day #2-9 (Fireday, 9th Thawmist, 4333 BCCC): Early in the pre-dawn, Falafela, Lightstep, Opalent, Vandin Lakesplitter, along with the three remaining dwarves they met a week ago at Losnoth, Narvet, Persis, and Tureg, and their new human fighter acquaintance Vox the Just, left Elwood the Blue’s citadel and ventured to Losnoth. It was about a 10-mile hike, mostly in a northeast direction. The hiking was mostly easy as the land was flat, the spring weather cool and mild, and their route paralleled a small stream just to the south of the party.

When the party arrived at Losnoth, they climbed the steep slope to the top of the hill amid the rubble of the old castle, but they could not find the stairway they had used to descend into the dungeon on their previous visit. Or rather they found where the stairway had been, but orcs or someone else had barricaded that stairway with numerous boulders and other rockwork. The party then spread out amongst the ruins of Losnoth and soon Narvet found another stairway leading down that was about 150 feet south-southeast of the previous stairway. The party ordered themselves, lit a torch (carried by Lightstep), and descended the stairs.

At the bottom of the stairs, the party saw hallways leading to their left and to their right, and a sort of foyer directly in front of them. That foyer was about 10-foot square, and on each side of the area was a diagonal alcove with each alcove containing a stone statue of an orc warrior guarding it. The two far corners of the area had diagonal hallways leading away into the dark, and on the far wall, between those two diagonal hallways, was a door, just slightly to the right of the center of the wall. The thief, Falafela, was totally creeped out by the statues and was wondering if they had any enchantment cast upon them that might allow the statues to come to life. Opalent and Falafela checked around the statues for any tricks or traps, and were finally satisfied that they were indeed just statues. The party checked out the door on the other side of the entrance foyer, but did not open it. They also peeked down the two diagonal passageways leaving the other side of the foyer, but did not take those routes. Instead, the party proceeded down the hallway to the left of the stairs.

After a short distance, perhaps 40 feet or so, the hallway turned either right or left. The party held to the left, then turned sharply to the right. After another several minutes of turning right and left, and even in a circle once, the party realized they were in some sort of a maze. The party, particularly Opalent and Falafela, checked at several places for secret doors, but found none. The group then decided to backtrack before getting totally lost and returned to the foyer.

The party then ventured down the diagonal passage to the right. When they came to a wye intersection that veered diagonally left and right, they went to the right. Then the passage turned to the right again and they saw that the corridor ended with doors to the right and to the left. They found the left-hand door was locked, and Falafela failed to pick the lock. They then tried the right-hand door and found it opened easily. They entered what seemed to be a wizard’s laboratory, finding a large slate table with various flasks, funnels, retorts and other paraphernalia upon it, although it did not appear to have been used lately. There was also a large brass brazier near the far-right corner of the room, and the walls had some storage cabinets containing 40 jars with various items inside the jars. Opalent took some crystals out of two of the jars, also picking up and keeping three prisms from the table, as well as a 6” length of chalk. The tallest member of the party, Vox, retrieved six half-burned candles from a circular chandelier that was suspended above the table.

Next, the party investigated a door on the far side of the laboratory, finding an old burlap sack in a corner in that room. Although the sack was too rotten to carry anything, the party did find a large number of electrum pieces within the sack. There were also four black cloaks laying on the floor, and when the party went to use one of the cloaks as a sack to carry the money back into the lab in order to count and distribute, a bone tube rolled out of one of the cloaks. Deigning not to open it on the spot, lest it contain a cursed item, Opalent stashed the tube with her belongings. Opalent also claimed one of the cloaks for herself, Falafela doing likewise. Vox and Lightstep then decided to take the last two cloaks. After returning to the lab they all counted the electrum pieces and found there were 750 of them. They quickly distributed the electrum pieces (each character got 94 EP, except Lightstep who only took 93 EP), and the adventurers stashed their newfound loot in their backpacks and other paraphernalia as best they could.

The party then decided to try the locked door on the other side of the hallway. They first had Vox strike the door with his long sword, which made a loud booming sound, thus arousing something on the other side of the door. The party could hear voices on the other side of the door, but could not discern what manner of creatures were speaking. Then Vox and Vandin (with his hammer) bashed the door in with three more heavy blows. When the door splintered and was opened, the party saw seven goblins within the room. The goblins did not have any weapons or armor, and quickly made mention of the fact they were slaves of some orcs. Fortunately, most of the party (except Vox) could understand the goblin tongue. The goblins begged the party to give the goblins weapons so they could kill the orcs who had enslaved them. While the party was speaking, a loud orcish sounding voice sounded through the door on the other side of the room, asking what all the loud banging was about. The goblins yelled back that they had been fighting amongst themselves because they couldn’t stand being cooped up with one another. Besides the goblins, the party noticed a number of straw sleeping mats on the floor, and in one corner was a small wooden table and two chairs. On the table was a jar with some jerky, and also a water jug.

While the party was parleying with the goblins, in particular musing over whether to believe the goblins’ claim that there was great treasure on a lower level of the dungeon, the orcs in the next room decided to investigate. The orcs sent three of their number around to the corridor the adventurers had used to enter the goblins’ room. The party had failed to post a guard in the hall; all eight adventurers and seven goblins were crammed into the 20’ x 30’ room of the goblins. When the circumnavigating orcs arrived at the sundered door, they sent up a loud cry that was the signal for other orcs in the room on the other side of the goblins’ room to unlock and open their door and attempt to barge into the room. The cleric, Lightstep, had just extinguished his torch, so when the orcs tried to barge into the room from their barracks room, Vox was in their way. Although Vox could not see to battle the orcs in the total darkness, not having infravision, he was shoved out of the way and the dwarf Narvet stood against the orcs at that door. Another dwarf, Persis, held the orcs at bay at the sundered door. In the meantime, Lightstep was furiously trying to re-light his torch. Fortunately for the party in the room, only one orc at a time could offer battle at each of the two doorways. Persis did a fine job against the three orcs arrayed against him at his doorway, as he slew each of the orcs in turn, receiving only a minor scratch in return. At the other doorway from the orcs’ room, Narvet matched up against the orcs at first, but Narvet was fatally felled. Then Vandin Lakesplitter bounded into the fray, not only barring entrance to the orcs, but also hammering them severely. After Vandin pounded three orcs to their doom, the other orcs beat a hasty retreat out of the other side of their room.

The party quickly reached a decision to not pursue the fleeing orcs, calculating that the orcs knew their way around the dungeon far better than the party, and also that if the party was to quickly pursue they would not be able to map their way through the dungeon, and could become lost. Not to mention that they didn’t know how many more orcs would or could arrive as reinforcements. The party quickly looked into the orcs’ 30’ x 40’ room, finding 10 bunk-beds (20 total bunks) and 20 footlockers that were either on the floor at the end of a bunk-bed or else under the bottom bunks. There were also 11 sets of leather armor hanging on pegs near the beds. (When the orcs investigated the commotion in the goblins’ room, they hadn’t taken the time to don their armor, figuring the noise would probably amount to nothing.) The party thought about checking the contents of the footlockers, but decided that orcs probably didn’t have much personal treasure and that they shouldn’t tarry in the neighborhood any longer. The party ordered the goblins to stay behind for five minutes after the adventurers left, lest the party have to slay the goblins. The party left the 6 dead orcs’ short-swords for the goblins to use to either fight the orcs or to make their way to freedom. The party did not see the goblins again after that.

The party then retraced their steps with haste, heading back to the diagonal passage and then leaving through the foyer and up the stairway. They also carried the dead body of the brave dwarf, Narvet, with them. They were also able to bring Narvet’s armor, arms, and possessions with them. Along the way back, some party members thought that Vandin should change his surname from Lakesplitter to Orcsplitter. Although, to be true, Vandin didn’t so much as split orcs, instead he literally bashed their brains out. After that, the party trudged the long 10 miles back to Elwood’s citadel, where Elwood questioned them about their encounter. He wanted to know how many orcs the party had met, or if any other creatures were encountered. Elwood’s ears picked up when the party mentioned they had found some black cloaks. Elwood asked if there was a red insignia of a burning eye on the cloaks, but the party replied that they were just plain black cloaks. The wizard’s laboratory also piqued Elwood’s interest. Elwood mentioned how the evil wizard, Lareth, had orchestrated an attack upon the village of Hommlet a number of years ago, but that Lareth had escaped and had not been seen since.

After burying Narvet alongside his previously fallen companions Arwarr, Firmil, and Hucid, the adventurers settled into the two abandoned cabins near Breathy’s inn, there to rest up and plan for further adventures. The cleric Lightfoot also cast Detect Magic (the item was magical) and Detect Evil (no evil was detected) upon the bone tube before Opalent opened it to view the contents. When the tube was opened, the contents were revealed to be two magic-user scrolls, one holding a Hold Portal spell, the other was a Jump spell.

Experience points: Monsters killed: 6 orcs (10 XP each, plus 1 XP per HP) = 6 * 10 + 30 HP = 90 XP. Although the party let the goblins go instead of killing them, they will still receive their XP for that (because good characters shouldn’t go around killing unarmed, sentient creatures!). 7 goblins (10 XP each, plus 1 XP per hit point) = 7 * 10 + 30 HP = 100 XP. Treasure: 750 EP, 4 cloaks (worth 5 SP each, or 1 GP total) = 376 GP equivalent. The party also found two magic scrolls, Hold Portal and Jump, but will not receive XP for them unless they are sold.

Total experience points: 90 + 100 + 375 + 1 = 566 XP total. This needs to be divided by five regular characters (each gets a full share) and two non-player characters (each gets a half-share). This makes 12 half-shares to be divided, so 566 / 12 = 47 XP per half-share (Persis and Tureg), or 94 XP per full share (Falafela and Opalent). The cleric Lightstep and the fighter Vox get a 10% XP bonus, so they earned 104 XP. Vandin Lakesplitter also earned a 10% bonus for excellent play of his dwarven fighter and thus also received 104 XP.

Treasure division: 750 EP (107 each, 1 remainder)

  • Falafela: cloak (5 SP), 107 EP
  • Lightstep: cloak (5 SP), 107 EP (must tithe 10% to deity, so must tithe 11 EP)
  • Opalent: cloak (5 SP), 107 EP, also 3 prisms, crystals, chalk
  • Vandin Lakesplitter: 107 EP
  • Vox the Just: cloak (5 SP), 107 EP
  • Persis: 107 EP
  • Tureg: 107 EP

Total accumulated experience points: Lightstep 419; Vandin Lakesplitter 390; Falafela 380; Opalent 380; Persis 190; Tureg 190; Vox the Just 104.

— The Dungeon Master

A First Adventure

Tuesday, December 15th, 2015

OK, so shortly after Christmas 2014, I got together with some friends, and I had them generate characters (only allowing the basic characters of fighter, cleric, magic-user, and thief for their 1st ever D&D characters). I was using 1st Edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons rules, and had prepared handouts for each player to help them with player creation. As a Dungeon Master (DM), I have players generate characters by rolling three 6-sided dice (3d6) six times, recording all six numbers (which are all between 3 and 18 inclusive), then they can apply the numbers to whichever characteristic they want to help create the type of character they want to play. If after rolling the six basic numbers they don’t seem strong enough for a character, I allow the player to re-roll all six numbers.

Finally, when the player is satisfied with the rolls and has distributed them into strength, intelligence, wisdom, dexterity, constitution, and charisma, I have them roll for their starting hit points. Then after that, they roll for their starting money according to their character class. After all that, I allow each character one “Mulligan” where they can re-roll any of the characteristics, or their starting hit points, or their starting money. If the Mulligan roll is higher than the roll it is replacing, the player uses the new number. If the Mulligan roll is equal to or lower than the original number, they keep the original number.

Sounds simple, right? Of course, the first time players generate characters, having never played D&D or any sort of other Fantasy Role-Playing Game (FRPG), they are not really sure what the numbers will be used for.

Next, players use their money to outfit their character with arms, armor, and accessories (such as wineskins, backpacks, etc.). Then after all of that, it’s off to a dungeon for adventure! So, here is how things went for their first adventure. I used a dungeon I created back around 1980 or so named “Losnoth.” Although that dungeon had been depleted by characters I DM’ed for way back around 1980, it was suddenly re-stocked for this new group of adventurers.

Day #2-1 (Airday, 1st Thawmist, 4333 BCCC): Note that this adventure begins on the 1st day of a new year, the year being 4333 BCCC, which stands for Balozkinar’s Corrected Commoners Calendar. The month is Thawmist, and the 1st day of the year is also the 1st day of the week, the day being Airday. Roughly translated to “real life,” the day would be the equivalent of the vernal equinox, i.e., the first day of spring, roughly on or about March 20. This is all taken from the Judges Guild Wilderlands D&D supplements.

Vandin Lakesplitter (male dwarf fighter, chainmail, small shield, hammer), Opalent (female elf magic-user, no armor, dagger), Lightstep (male halfling cleric, ringmail, small shield, hammer), and Falafela (female halfling thief, leather armor, dagger) had journeyed to the destroyed castle of Losnoth. The rubble of the former castle sat upon a hill that is about 60 feet high, with a steep slope up any side of about 30 degrees. Atop the rubble, after a short search the party found a staircase leading down to the underground area, but at the bottom of the stairs they found a 10-foot deep pit, with sharp spikes at the bottom of the pit and with two human-sized skeletons lying in the bottom of the pit. Since all members of the party had infravision, they were glad they had lighted a torch instead of relying on their infravision as they would have tumbled into the pit as it was the same temperature as the rest of its surroundings. The party quickly used their 10-foot pole and rope to rig a sort of bridge connecting the two existing spikes on either side of the pit that had been driven into seams in the rock wall at some time previous to the party’s arrival. The party was then able to cross the pit without incident or injury.

After crossing the pit, the party found themselves in an hourglass shaped banquet hall or dining room. The room was about 80 feet from left to right, and most of the room was about 50 feet across, except the party came into the middle of the room from one side where the “waist” of the room was only about 30 feet across. In the left lobe of the room were four formerly fine mahogany tables, each measuring about 6 feet wide by 12 feet long. There were also eight chairs of similar construction around each table. But all of the tables and chairs had much graffiti carved into them, so they wouldn’t have any salvage value. There were also racks around the walls in the left side of the room that contained various eating utensils, mostly earthen plates, bowls, and cups along with crudely fashioned metal knives, forks, and spoons of low value. All together, there were about 20 place settings on the racks. In the right side of the room were a pair of large padded sofas that were covered with a formerly rich, red fabric that was now deeply soiled and tattered. There were two low coffee-style tables in front of the sofas, but those tables were also deeply carved with graffiti.

Before proceeding any further, the party took one of the 12-foot long tables from the banquet hall and used it to bridge the pit at the bottom of the stairs in case they would have to make a hasty retreat. The party also retrieved their rope from the improvised bridge across the pit. The adventurers peeked down the right passageway that led out of the dining room, but instead exited through the passage that was straight across from where they had entered the room. They were in a hallway that went to the left and to the right; they decided to go left. After 30 feet or so, the hall curved gently to the left, like it was following the curved corner wall of the room they had just exited, and they came upon a wooden door at the end of the hall.

The party found the door opened easily, and once they all passed through the door they found they were in an irregularly shaped trophy room. The room was about 40 feet across, with the left side long wall being about 60 feet long, the right side long wall about 30 feet long, then it moved diagonally towards the other wall. There was a row of five support columns made of smooth granite in the left side of the room, and three similar support columns in the right side of the room. There were plaques of coats-of-arms on the columns. There were also 11 animal head trophies on the walls: two bulls; three leopards; two goats; three boars; and a unicorn head. In about the middle of the room, between the rows of columns, was a 10-foot square rug that was surrounded by a wooden frame. While the rest of the party were debating about whether or not the rug was in fact a trap (none of them were willing to test it), Falafela quickly took the unicorn horn from the unicorn head and stashed it in her backpack. She knew it was an excellent antidote to any sort of poison as long as it was in her possession.

The party then crossed the trophy room (while avoiding the rug) to its diagonal far corner, where there were diagonal hallways to the left and right. Before taking either hallway, they found a secret door in the middle of a long wall through the efforts of Opalent. They opened the secret door, with the dwarven fighter Vandin Lakesplitter entering first, and encountered six dwarven fighters of Firmil’s adventuring party (the others were Arwarr, Hucid, Narvet, Persis, and Tureg, and they were armed with four axes, some hammers and a mace, and a couple of swords and a light and a heavy crossbow, all armored with chainmail and shields) within, as those other dwarves had been resting in that room. Vandin and Firmil’s group quickly struck up a friendship and agreed to co-operate in the interest of killing orcs. They also agreed that any treasure they already owned was theirs (Firmil had already claimed a candlestick worth about 10 gold pieces from the room), but that they would split any future treasure amongst the now 10 adventurers equally.

Besides the adventuring dwarves, Vandin, Lightstep, Opalent, and Falafela found a fine bed, table, chair, and nightstand in the room, as well as a wooden wardrobe cabinet. There were some papers on the table, but they all had writing in a strange tongue that nobody could decipher. There were some clothing items in the wardrobe, and Falafela and Opalent each found a pair of high, hard boots that fit them, each pair of boots being worth about 2 gold pieces (GP). Falafela, being only 2’8” tall, would have to get the boots cut down in height before they would be truly useful. And although she was a halfling, she said she preferred to wear boots instead of going barefoot when adventuring in strange dungeons because boots would protect her feet.

The now enlarged party left the bedroom through a regular door in the opposite side of the room from the secret door. Firmil said none of his party had been aware of the secret door until the other party had entered and caught them by surprise. Outside the bedroom was a four-way intersection, with a long hall leading to the left, and apparent dead ends to the right and straight across. Just as the group went down the (40-foot) long hallway, they suddenly encountered 5 patrolling orcs who were coming up the passageway to that four-way intersection. While all 5 orcs were quickly killed in the fight (orc Hit Points (HP): 1, 3, 2, 1, 4), Vandin Lakesplitter was wounded severely; losing 5 of his 6 hit points. Cleric Lightstep had to cast two Cure Light Wounds spells to cure the damage to Vandin, using both of his known spells of that type. Falafela was able to up-arm herself by claiming one of the short swords from one of the dead orcs, as she had only been equipped with a dagger beforehand. The party also dragged the dead orcs into the bedroom rather than leave them lying in the hallway.

Now the party was feeling lucky, and they went back to the four-way intersection. After a quick examination of the hallway that was straight across from the entrance to the bedroom, another secret door was found. Vandin then opened that secret door and was quickly attacked by a giant rat! Vandin just as quickly dispatched the rat with a mighty swing from his hammer (giant rat 2 HP) without getting bitten. This room was apparently a storeroom, and had much junk piled in it, including rusty scrap iron, broken barrels, some old linen and assorted other junk. The party then searched through the debris in the room and found a locked iron-reinforced wooden chest that had been hidden by that old linen. After Falafela checked for any traps, she was unable to pick the lock, so Vandin bashed the chest open with his war hammer. They found a large number of electrum pieces (EP) and platinum pieces (PP) in the chest. They wrapped the coins into some of the old linens from that room, then took it back to the bedroom so they could use the table in there for counting and equal division of the coins. The haul amounted to 750 EP and 100 PP. Firmil detailed Persis and Tureg to keep watch in the corridor while the coins were being counted. Then, as a couple of the dwarves from Firmil’s party had taken some damage in the battle with the orcs, and seeing as how the only cleric (Lightstep) in the party had no more Cure Light Wounds spells, the party agreed to leave the dungeon and then return at a following date.

The party then left through the four-way intersection, through the hall in which they had fought the orcs, then turned left, proceeded a short way, then turned right just about where the secret door to the bedroom was, and re-entered the trophy room. Instead of leaving the way they had entered the trophy room, they found another door that opened directly into the dining room. But just when they entered the dining room and were working their way past the three remaining dining tables, a party of 7 orcs entered that room from the opposite entrance to that room. A pitched battle ensued in the middle of the room. Opalent quickly launched her only spell, Magic Missile, which inflicted 4 HP on an orc, although not killing it. While all 7 orcs were eventually slain in the battle, dwarves Arwarr, Firmil, and Hucid were also killed, testifying to the fierceness of the short battle. During the melee, Vandin was gravely wounded and fell unconscious, and Opalent dragged Vandin out of the fray amidst swinging weapons to administer first aid by binding Vandin’s wounds. The thief, Falafela, was able to sneak around the orcs and got in a good backstab on one orc, inflicting 4 HP of damage. Falafela attempted to perform a couple more backstabs, but other dwarves or the cleric Lightstep killed the other orcs before Falafela could strike again.

The party was originally going to take the leather armor and short swords of the orcs they killed in the hallway previously so they could try to sell them in town, but now since they only had six relatively healthy adventurers and three dead dwarves and one unconscious dwarf to take back to civilization with them, they had to leave all of the orcs’ swords and leather armor behind (except, of course, for Falafela’s trophy sword). The surviving dwarves of Firmil’s party also had to leave their extra weapons behind in the interest of saving weight carried, and they also left behind the armor and shields of the deceased dwarves. Now the party used haste to leave before more orcs might appear, as the group was in no shape for another battle. The party was able to cross the table-bridge across the pit at the foot of the stairs, then climbed the stairs and exited the dungeon. They then made the long 10-mile trek back to Elwood the Blue’s castle without further incident, although it was a long march what with carrying the three dead and one unconscious dwarf.

Experience points (XP): Monsters killed: 12 orcs (10 XP each, plus 1 XP per HP) = 12 * 10 + 47 HP = 167 XP; 1 giant rat (7 XP, plus 1 XP per HP) = 7 + 2 HP = 9 XP. Treasure: Unicorn horn worth 500 GP; gold candlestick worth 10 GP; short sword and scabbard worth 8 GP; two pairs of high, hard boots, each pair worth 2 GP (4 GP total) plus 750 EP (375 GP equivalent) and 100 PP (500 GP equivalent).

Total experience points: 167 + 9 + 500 + 10 + 8 + 4 + 375 + 500 = 1573 XP total. This needs to be divided by four regular characters (each gets a full share) and three non-player characters (each gets a half-share). This makes 11 half-shares to be divided, so 1573 / 11 = 143 XP per half-share (Narvet, Persis, and Tureg), or 286 XP per full share (Falafela, Opalent, Vandin Lakesplitter). The cleric Lightfoot gets a 10% XP bonus, so he earned 315 XP.

Treasure division: 750 EP (107 each, 1 remainder), 100 PP (14 each, 2 remainder)

  • Falafela: unicorn horn (500 GP), boots (2 GP), 107 EP, 14 PP
  • Lightstep: 107 EP, 14 PP (must tithe 10% to deity, so must tithe 12.5 GP equivalent, or 25 EP),
  • Opalent: boots (2 GP), 107 EP, 14 PP
  • Vandin Lakesplitter: 107 EP, 14 PP
  • Narvet: candlestick (10 GP), 95 EP, 14 PP
  • Persis: 113 EP, 14 PP
  • Tureg: 113 EP, 14 PP

— The Dungeon Master