Item: Lost Mine of Phandelver; Playing as Linka; Sat 9 Apr 16
Sometimes I wish that Mr. Murphy was a real person so I can kill him. I could just see my overweight ass sneak up behind him and pull a Richard Marcinko. Shanky shanky Mcstabstab.
I knew this day will go to shit when the lawn mower broke just as I was about to mow my parent’s lawn. But imagine my consternation when the time came for that night’s session and my main computer won’t connect to the Internet. It’s Wireless connector (I needed to use Wireless over at my parents) had a Code 101 (My way of saying that something’s not working because of something I have no clue over, which eventually fixes itself for no good reason. It’s taken from Disney Castmember lingo for something that’s out of order) and it took most of that night, and the session, to decide to be working again.
So I didn’t have a recording of Saturday’s session, which is sad, because DM Denzil, the rules lawyer, found out something I learned long ago in my DMing career: The most epic of TPKs you’ll ever have will end up being thwarted.
At least the thwart wasn’t in record time.
But was by thwarted by the resident pervert in the group.
Clair Valentine, as you’ve seen in the previous week, is the bard who has befriended countless animals using Animal Handling in the forests toward Thundertree. By the time the party arrived, she has amasses a small menagerie of a pack of wolves and an owlbear.
God as my witness, I couldn’t make this up. I was afraid that she would charm Linka, and what she’ll do with the panda. This is the same player who plays a lesbian bard who wants to get it on with every tiefling she sees—including Vanifer!!—and thought that attuning to an orb of dragonkind that beefs up performance but will turn you into an evil elder dragon if you every perform is a good idea.
That would be the Bonehead PC move of the week if it weren’t for what happened last session: Thundertree is a sticking point in my attempts in Lost Mine of Phandelver because of that Green Dragon. It created a TPK last time I was in it. Imagine my facepalm when one of the party members walked up to Thundertree and yelled out, at top lung, “Is there anybody in here!?”
Cue every creature in the abandoned village. Twig Blight, [My style of] Zombie, and Green Fucking Elder Dragon. All making a beeline toward the party, and making me wish that I could invoke PVP mode but Linka would never think of that. At least there was a tavern with a forgotten stash of brew for her to drink and, as I normally do, ride through the storm.
Of course that won’t work when the dragon comes crashing from above.
That’s when Denzil found out about something that Wolves have called ‘Pack Tactics,’ where the wolves can charge over and attack with advantage, and their collective bites can bring down even a dragon the size of a large house! With the dragon prone, the party makes short work of the dragon. In spite of poison breath taking down a couple PCs including Linka. Putting Denzil into a familiar emotion for me; that you make an encounter that is sure to TPK only to have the party surprise you in actually succeeding.
Don’t feel bad, Denzil. I’ve been at this game or three years, and my TPK count is at 1.
The party is then able to play Hot Gates with the riff raff—did you forget about the three dozen twig blights and zombies while all this is going on—and funnel them through the staircase from outside the tavern basement and pick them off King Leonidas style. Sparta would be proud.
And an all-too-human chill flowed over DM Denzil’s soul. The sheer amount of XP earned brought everyone up to Level 5 (Only because I invoked my DM’s award where—as decided on in this table—everyone gets the bonus XP when I cash one in.) Also, Linka got ahold of an Apparatus of Kawalish which she’ll use for traveling, on top of a metric boatload of gold for any magic items she might need. (I definitely need to get her a +1 Quarterstaff or Silvered Brass Knuckles.
I’ll decide over the week.
Warning: Political Content Ahead
I had to console Spacehamzter over the weekend. As you know, I rarely get political here, instead taking it to Google Plus for my bitching. However, this spilled onto sacred grounds.
I’m glad to say that I’ve got Baldur’s Gate Enhanced Edition I off of a Steam Sale. Especially after what they did to a DLC I will never buy, Siege of Dragonspear. I want to put this out there on the record and state what most of us who are up in arms about this dungheap add-on are all about:
We are not bitching because of a Trans character. We who play and DM Dungeons and Dragons have met at least one Trans NPC during our combined campaigns. We don’t give a fuck about Trans NPCs, most of us wouldn’t care whatever or not a NPC is trans, a fellow player can make a Trans PC and we won’t give a rat king’s collective ass about said PC as long as he’s* good in a fight. (Note: I default to Cis Male Pronouns as a writing convention. Look at the warning on the left if this triggers you, and get out more.)
What we are bitching about is the gross disregard of what is known in some parts as “Character Integrity.” In the Siege of Dragonspear, they changed three important characters to fit their feminist agenda and to rip at Gamergate.
One of the characters changed was Minsc. The Beloved Ranger.
That, to many D&D players, is the equivalent of high blasphemy. You can draw a picture of Mohammad while shitting on a Koran, wrapped in bacon and wearing a carved out Pig’s head, and you will be more redeemable than making a much-adored character talking smack about “Ethics in [games] Journalism,” something that does not fucking exist in Faerun!!
This is the same problem Marvel got when they made Jane Foster into Thorina. A female Thor we didn’t mind. We complained about a female replacement for Thor. There were perfectly vacated Superheroes they can do a Rule 63 on without anyone raising a stink. But they pushed Thorina up against everyone’s faces and said “You’re a misogynist pig if you don’t like it.”
Minsc is intended to be too addled-minded to be interested in politics by design. (That’s a topic best left for Boo, IMHO) Safana is intended to be a tease by design. The whole Forgotten Realms does not have the same environment that our world has or–thank God–the world that Beamdog lives in, by design. Changing that is what got Beamdog in as much hot water, and none other. We don’t care if there’s a trans NPC in Siege of Dragonspear. We do care about Minsc being co-opted by SJW prissants! If that is too much for you to wrap your head around, then I can’t believe that you actually coded that game, because you do not understand the words that are coming out of my mouth. That, and I have no intention of spending my money for your so-called ‘Game,’ in fact, I wouldn’t even torrent Siege of Dragonspear because it’s not even worth the electrons used in the illegal act.
You are not worth my money, Beamdog. If this means we’ll never have a Baldur’s Gate III, so bet it. I have RPG Maker MV, I can get by.
Now then, back to our original programming.
Item: Hoard of the Dragon Queen; Playing as Justin; 10 Apr 16
Ever heard of the saying, “When opening a door where you know someone’s waiting on the other side, lob in a grenade first to ensure friendly reception?”
That is essentially the first part of this session. When the party came up to the mill house in Greenrest, they discovered that there is a small group of raiders waiting for them inside. After a lengthy discussion that took up way too much time, they decided to do a rather modern ‘Breach and Clear’ technique. I had Justin make up a potion version of the Flash Bang; something I had to add to my character material on the fly. Justin would toss it in where, when it breaks, creates a blinding light for 30’ and produces a deafening bang, everyone in the room must make a CON Spell Save DC or be stunned for one minute.
Justin would throw in that flash bang potion a la Gauntlet 2 into that mill and have the others take the feebs down.
Fine time to roll a Nat 1, if you ask me.
Fuck You, Murphy.
Fortunately, the other players can pick up the slack, and I got Justin moved to another vantage point so he can snipe. All in all, I’m developing the Æthercoil Engineer class with Justin here.
The other half of the session, where we dealt with rescuing the clerics of Chantea from a siege-in-progress chapel, moved faster. That’s where Justin found something that will provide some well-needed character development. He got a good chunk of magical ore that, when forged into a weapon, will provide an additional offense against Evil-aligned beings—including Dragon Cultists. Whatever this weapon becomes is up in the air.
I would have it be a gun, but I don’t know if the DM would permit it.