Seize Everything
Seize Everything

Random Notes on Saturday’s Game

Stream-of-consciousness run-through of Saturday’s D&D session:

  • If the players discover something interesting, they will try to connect it to everything else that happens.
  • Awesome moment: barbarian/cleric Marcus Bighammer and necromancer/cleric Sh’vass mud wrestling in the middle of a mass grave, with the dwarven monk Atlas Brulio using some of his fire elixir to breathe flame over their heads.
  • Sudden bad weather is unexpected.
  • If it’s dark and raining and the party can’t see who’s attacking them they will say fuck this and get back on the horses, even if they can tell by the number of crossbow bolts in each volley that they outnumber the attackers. Admittedly, this might have something to do with the fact that the non-riddled-with-bolts party members felt that whoever it was was in the right to be shooting at a bunch of armed guys bursting into their barn without knocking. The rogue Verrik was pretty vocal about wanting to kill them all, but then again he was also the first PC shot, when he’d tried to open one of the crates they found in the back of the barn.
  • Great exchange during the argument as to whether or not they should stay and kill whoever was in the barn: Verrik: “I got shot! Right here!” Atlas, pointing at Faust: “He did too! There, there and there! He’s not complaining!”
  • According to the bartender at the tavern in the nearby village, the farmstead where the guys were shooting at the players is abandoned and haunted.
  • Giving the passed-out necromancer his own room to sleep it off might not be such a good idea, especially if he doesn’t normally drink alcohol and passed out after one drink given to him by the “religious pilgrims” in the corner of the tavern.
  • Running a kidnapped party member through Skype while at the same time running the people looking for him worked really, really well.
  • Faust the wizard is pretty good at taking charge when no one else knows where to look for kidnapped party members.
  • If the necromancer’s mule is still in the stable, then he didn’t just leave by himself, seeing as that mule is the only living creature he really cares about.
  • Only two leads as to the whereabouts of the kidnapped necromancer, Sh’vass: the fact that he passed out after drinking something given to him by the pilgrims when the party was asking around about crazy farmers to the north of town who might be shooting as passers-by, and the fact that the large, bald and scarred pilgrim that the others called Brother Samson wasn’t there in the morning.
  • Brother Samson is in the village church, praying. He has taken a vow of silence and is generally unhelpful.
  • The bartender told them that the bridge across the river (namely, the one they wanted to cross) had been washed out in the thunderstorm. A quick ride and a thorough inspection revealed that no, someone had blown it up.
  • The pilgrims are waiting for someone. They’ve been in town for a week now.
  • The priest is letting the pilgrims stay at his church. It was through him that the villagers learned of their arrival in town.
  • The pilgrims apparently have decent will saves, except for one guy who is now compelled to speak only the truth.
  • The only guy the Zone of Truth spell worked on tried to make a break for it. That did not go well. Marcus Bighammer is holding him off the ground.
  • Holy shit, that pilgrim’s got grenades! Standoff.
  • Atlas Brulio also has grenades. Not to be outdone by some damn pilgrim, he threatens to blow everyone up as well.
  • Pilgrim grows impatient with the negotiations and strikes the fuses to his grenades. The paladin, Gibson, once again shows his strong ethical backing by trying to use the village priest as a gnomish shield. Marcus Bighammer forgoes a reflex save to try and tackle the guy with the grenades away from everyone else, and gets a natural 20. Both the pilgrim with the grenades and the pilgrim that Marcus was holding die in a flurry of shrapnel, and Marcus’ armor is shot to hell, but he survived, and no one else took damage.
  • Before dying, the “pilgrim” with the grenades screamed, “FOR THE PROPHET!” The players guess that this means the pilgrims are actually revolutionaries working for the Lead Prophet.
  • Now that he’s holding the priest they suspect of colluding with the revolutionaries, Gibson sees no reason to let go.
  • Faust sees one of the “pilgrims” getting away, riding hell-for-leather to the north. Gibson passes the priest to Bighammer and he, Faust and Verrik take off after the fleeing revolutionary.
  • Atlas Brulio finds the kidnapped necromancer, Sh’vass, tied to a chair in the basement of the church, with a dead guy on the floor at his feet.
  • When the grenades went off, the guy keeping a watch on Sh’vass tried to knife him. Unfortunately for him, he made the mistake of touching Sh’vass first, to steady the blow. If Sh’vass’ deathtouch ability hadn’t dropped him right there, his player would have most likely been rolling up a new character.
  • Sh’vass’ equipment, but not his money, is in the basement as well.
  • Sh’vass is pissed. When he learns that the village priest–the gnome currently restrained by Bighammer, and stunned by Atlas Brulio when he tried to cast a spell–was involved in his kidnapping, he calmly loaded his pistol and shot the gnome in the head.
  • At this point it occurred to those still in the church that they ought to follow the guys who’d already ridden off / flee the angry mob that would probably be forming as soon as confused villagers realized what the gunshot meant.
  • On the ride Sh’vass tells Bighammer and Brulio what he found out/surmised from his imprisonment, namely that these rebels disguised as pilgrims were in town waiting for three of their number who had gone to the Grey City to steal some heavy weaponry from the Arsenal. Specifically, the three guys who ended up on the wrong side of Faust’s lightning bolt during the previous session.
  • The three PCs following the fleeing revolutionary followed him to the “abandoned and haunted” farmstead where they’d been ambushed the day before. The rebel stumbled off his horse and sprinted to the farmstead, where someone opened the door for him. The PCs decided to make for the barn first before going into the farmstead itself.
  • In the barn is Brother Samson, unloading one of the crates that Verrik had been so interested in the day before. Apparently it contains muskets, but he’s not interested in those–he’s just stacking them to the side, carelessly, trying to reach something at the bottom of the crate. With him are the two guys who seem to hang out with him all the time–a red-headed man who is helping him unload muskets and a guy who’s face reminds everyone of a rat, lurking in the loft with a crossbow. Red-head steps up to speak when Verrik and Gibson ride through the barn door.
  • Faust hides around the side of the barn, and thus is the first to notice when armed rebels come pouring out of the farmstead towards the barn. They are more concerned with surrounding the entrances to the building, and don’t notice him.
  • Red-head and Verrik have a lengthy conversation, during which each assumes the other is working for someone that the other has never heard of. Brother Samson and his two fellows seem to be a separate subset of the rebels, not actually working for the Lead Prophet.
  • Sh’vass, Bighammer and Atlas are spotted riding towards the farmstead by rebels. Their leader, a man Sh’vass recognizes as the guy who was asking him questions for most of the time he was in the basement, shouts “It’s the elf! Shoot him!” Most of the rebels turn from surrounding the barn and start taking cover.
  • Those inside hear the shout. The red-head sighs. “They got their shit together faster than I thought they would,” he said. “We’re gonna have to kill you now. Nothing personal, you understand, right? But if we stop your interference, we still might get these fanatics’ plan to work. And if we walk out of the barn without having left you dying inside, well…” He shrugged. “What can you do?”
  • It was at about this point that Brother Samson set the last musket aside, reached into the bottom of the crate and pulled out a large double-headed warhammer, a plain weapon with a red X painted on each face. He hefted it and turned to Verrik and Gibson.
  • The session ended with these words, spoken by the man known to the players as Brother Samson, in a thick Merdallan accent: “There is no honor in a death by Brand. A man should know the name of the one who kills him. For this reason, allow me to introduce myself. My name is Sir Tibrius of the Crimson March, and I shall slay you in the name of the king.” When he was done speaking, plate armor appeared on his body, piece by piece, ending with a helmet in his now-gauntleted hands, which he lowered onto his head. The red-headed man stepped back to give Sir Tibrius room to swing his hammer, drawing a pistol from his coat as he did so. In the rafters the rat-faced man slotted a bolt into his crossbow, and outside the rebels leveled muskets as the three approaching riders broke into a gallop…

And that’s where we ended for the night.

Some minor notes:

-The Kingdom of Merdallan is the sworn enemy of the Illarym Empire, where the players are now. Presumably, Sir Tibrius and co. are kicking around the Empire stirring up trouble, and saw helping out the rebels as a good way of furthering that goal. It is uncertain at this time if the rebels actually know who “Brother Samson” is.

-This is the first time we’ve ended a session at the beginning of combat.

-Watching my players put two-and-two together during the time after they found Sh’vass was a pleasure. Things they figured out: that the pilgrims were actually revolutionaries, the aforementioned connection between the weapon-thieves in the Grey City and the rebels here, that Sh’vass was kidnapped after he basically told the rebels-disguised-as-pilgrims in the tavern that the party had broken into their secret base and poked around for a bit before being run out by the guards, and that Brother Samson’s bunch weren’t actually part of the main rebel body.

-Hearing people walk out the door saying how great the session was is, as always, one of my great pleasures.

  • reply A Loud and Bloody Confusion « Carpe Omnis ,

    […] wish I had taken a picture of the map I made for last week’s combat. The party had ended the previous session with a major fight looming, a fight which we spent most of last week playing out. The turns moved […]

    Leave a comment

    © Copyright 2011-2017