Sunday, October 15, 2017

Banished to the Purple Planet - Part Two


Under a Weirdling Sun


Peril on the Purple Planet is an epic DCCRPG box set devised by +Harley Stroh. The adventure is a hex crawl, so player characters get to explore a completely open and lush world. Characters must discover artifacts, make alliances, battle terrifying worms, and sustain the deadly sun's rays if they are to ever make their way back home.

Care to hear about this week's banishment? Read on!

Previous Tales of the Banished



The Banished






Banished to the Purple Planet, Part Two


I'm struggling a bit on the best way to share The Free Company's story on the Purple Planet. In the past I've done some pretty lengthy adventure summaries, complete with all kinds of intricate details. But since this is more of an open world, and given that some of the "game" is actually dealing with the minutiae of scavenging, finding food and water, and evading the sun, I'm going to try something different: a day-to-day log of major events. 

Sure, this might make for a less interesting read for folks who aren't as familiar with our player characters, but I think this makes the most sense for our group. At the very least, if you're running Peril on the Purple Planet as well, you can compare stories. Perhaps when we get to more of the "meat" of the adventure I expand on the conversation a bit more. But for now, here's the adventure log:

Day 1

  • The Free Company selected Nicodemus, Floyd Pink, Screaming Otto, and Imric to lead the first leg of the journey.
  • The party searched the bodies of the dead Kith, and determined that one group (with a banner that appeared to be a head/skull in a box/container) came from the northwest, while the other (with a banner that appeared to be a castle or large structure) came from the northeast.
  • The party spent an inordinate amount of time trying to democratically decide where they were going to go. Three of the four party "leaders" chose northwest, while Imric wanted to go towards the water to the southwest. 
  • Rather than explore during the hot day, The Free Company rested until dusk and then set out across the wasteland.
  • By midnight the party had traveled six miles northwest and found nothing but more wastes. 

Day 2

  • Between midnight and dawn the party traveled another twelve miles, moving slowly so that they could search the area for signs of civilization or anything else that could be used as a shelter for when the sun came up. Nothing.
  • With the sun rising, the party headed west towards the mountains. There they hoped they could find shade, solace, and perhaps a place for Watson to cast his Patron Bond spell with Aquilia. 
  • At the foothills of the mountain (6 more miles) the party saw a party of Kith raiders in the distance (about 2 miles away). Rather than get their attention, The Free Company hid behind some boulders.
  • Once in the mountains, the party discovered an ancient cairn. By this time the party found themselves sapped of Stamina by the ancient purple sun. 
  • Nicodemus disable a falling floor trap at the entrance to the cairn.
  • Once inside, the party uncovered seven sarcophagi illuminated by for greenstone shards embedded in a central pillar. 
  • Fearing the sarcophagi contents, the party rested for the night.
  • Unfortunately, there was a shortage of water in the party. Imric and Otto did not have waterskins. Imric decided to go without for the evening while Otto drank his own urine.
  • After resting until sundown (approximately 8pm) the party started checking the sarcophagi, revealing seven undead kith mummies!
  • The kith mummies had burning claw attacks that nauseated victims. 
  • Wayne and Gastronomix joined in the battle.
  • After defeating the mummies, the party searched the sarcophagi and found valuable jewelry a functional ray rifle with limited charges, a skullcap, and a cache of greenstone shards.
  • While the rest of the party wasn't looking, Nicodemus pilfered the four greenstone shards illuminating the room.
  • Imric agreed to try on the silver skullcap in exchange for some of Floyd's water. Once donning the cap, Imric realized that it would let him translate (and possible speak) in any language he could hear. 


Adventure Notes



  • I know that there is a regaining stamina rule for dealing with the purple sun, but I wasn't sure how the lack of food and water could play a role without dragging down the game. So I went with the rule that only access to both allowed a PC to regain their Stamina loss. I'm interested in how other folks are handling this.
  • Given that Jonata was all for letting his PC drink his own urine, I came up with this quick mechanic:
    • Urine Consumption: DC 10 fortitude saving throw to keep the urine down, and then only regain 1d3 Stamina loss (cannot exceed maximum Stamina).
  • Since we were short on combat for the night, I made the Kith Mummies harder than how they were in the original adventure:
    • Burning claws, +4 to hit, 1d7+2 damage plus burned flesh.
    • The target of this attack must make a DC 15 fortitude save or the smell of burnt flesh and hair sickened the target. -1D for all actions for 1 round.


Quotes



"One minute I was asleep and next all this shit is purple." - Nicodemus wasn't around for the last adventure. 

"Hey, hey! How do I look in this? Does it make me look fat?" - Nicodemus to Floyd upon donning a shrunken kith head belt. 

"The Purple Planet mixed with Candyland." - Marc commenting on Judge James' description of the forest to the east.

"Pee is drinkable... all I'm saying." - Jonata was ready to do this.

"They should call it the Yellow Planet." - Paul was grossed out that Jonata was ready to do this.

"Raging Nicodemus. Like Screaming Otto, with profanity." - Alex describes his character. 

"It's the strength of the pee!" - Jonata after rolling a natural 20 on the final hit on the kith mummies. 


In Memoriam 

  • Screaming Otto's dignity. 

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Father/Daughter MCCRPG - Hive of the Overmind - Part 1



A New Mutation Forms


I've done a lot of adventure recaps on the Living 4 Crits blog post, but this series is going to be special. I'm not writing any actual adventure summaries. I guess technically I'll be writing part of the blog portion, and doing all the editing, but for this monthly series my daughter (the infamous Judge Evie) will be in charge of doing the actual "recap" for the adventures. You see, this new campaign isn't just mine, it's "ours." 

She asked to write her parts out long hand.

Now that we've had a chance to thoroughly dig through the Mutant Crawl Classics Role Playing Game, Evie and I wanted to roll the game out in a campaign format. So we agreed to start running a monthly father/daughter, co-judged campaign for anyone interested at our Norwin Game Knights events. We'd have a fairly even split of game master duties: I'd take care of giving most of the scene overviews and adjudicating rules, and she'd take care of managing monsters and dishing out ad libbed craziness. 


I know I do a lot of gushing about my family on this blog, and I'm sorry if I drive any of you crazy, but I can't help it. Seriously, this was one of the coolest games I've ever played, and not just because of it being a shared event between me and my daughter. Mutant Crawl Classics was such a wonderful game to run at the club! Of our eight players, five were seasoned Dungeon Crawl Classics players. But our young group (ages nine to fourteen), were absolutely enthralled by the post-apocalyptic gonzo of MCCRPG. 



With all the Mutant Crawl Classics Kickstarter rewards flowing in right now, I really wanted to get cracking on the published adventures. So Evie and I have a plan. We kicked off the new campaign with +Julian Bernick's insectoid 0-level funnel, Hive of the Overmind, and we plan on moving through the rest of the published adventures one by one as the year progresses. I'm fairly confident that most of the players are along for the entire ride. By the end of the night, everyone was clamoring to roll up their mutations and pick out their pure strain human classes. 

So far we have a pretty interesting cast!

Judge Evie striking fear into Evan's heart.

The Initiates of the Dolphinquisition


  • Carrie
    • Oliver - Pure Strain Human
    • Era - Pure Strain Human [Advances as Shaman]
  • Ryan
    • Ranno - Manimal (Toad) [Advances as Manimal]
    • Dr. Snek - Mutant 
  • Gavin
    • Nike - Pure Strain Human
    • Barf - Plantient [Advances as Planitent]
  • Alex
    • Guthric - Pure Strain Human [Advances as Rover]
    • Cactilus - Plantient (Cactus)
  • Ella
    • Wallace - Mutant [Advances as Mutant]
    • Milo - Pure Strain Human
  • Nick
    • Logan - Mutant
    • Dominic - Mutant [Advances as Mutant]
  • Evan
    • Colossus - Mutant [Advances as Mutant]
    • Berry - Mutant
  • Alex (Fry Guy)
    • Terra AD's Best Blower - Manimal (Lion)
    • Nicky P. - Pure Strain Human [Advances as Healer]



Hive of the Overmind - Part 1

Recap by Guest Blogger, Evie Walls

Everyone started out in an ant hive where this giant bee came in came in combat with them. This world is Terra AD! As they destroyed the monster they continued on. After a few fights, Ryan's character discovers a stone hoe. One second later, Fry Guy [Alex #2] and Ryan are bidding and fighting over a stone hoe. As they are each fighting over the hoe it breaks, so does Ryan's character's skull.

A few rooms later everyone hears "help, I'm drowning!" 

Ryan sees a frog thing and immediately yells "those are my people!"

At the garbage room everyone started to explore. A lot of people got pretty cool things. Stone axes, paragon elixer, stim gum, but others were not so lucky Some people said "hello" to giant maggots, but others found plastic babies. Evan found a plastic baby, and slowly flipped it over. As soon as it said "mama" it was getting smashed into pieces by Evan.

In this process Cactilus dies a normal death from a giant maggot. 

A few moments later the party came across a mucous bridge. Everyone made it across... except for Berry. Berry was walking (in a sack) across the bridge and closed his eyes to remember being awesome. As he opened his eyes he was walling into lava.

Well we can say "bye" to him. Peace out!

A couple minutes later everyone is fighting giant swarms of ant-men larvae. A lot of characters took damage during this time including Ella's character who took a hit of 2. During this adventure Ryan is being very "punny!" Ha, ha!

Anyways, these large swarms aren't done yet.

Fry guy's character starts to throw his gum at the ant men larvae. As they eat it, the swarms start to form one giant monster. 

[Judge James' note: this whole encounter modification was definitely Evie's idea!]

This monster spits out goo acid that burns flesh with a 1d4 damage. While they are fighting this thing, the time ran out. Everyone leveled up and we were all ready for more next time. 



Campaign Crematorium 


  • Dr. Snek - Dragged off edge of cliff by giant bee
  • Nike - Eaten by garbage maggot
  • Cactilus - Eaten by garbage maggot
  • Logan - Bitten to death
  • Berry - Tried to potato sack race across mucous bridge over lava

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

New Descriptor: Vegetarian

Fun fact: this is currently in my refrigerator

I know that a lot of you out there are just like me: passionate gamers who love Numenera and are super excited about the Numenera 2 Kickstarter. Also, just like me, I'm sure that many of you (if not MOST of you) are also vegetarian. But as we vegetarians all know, it can be really hard to be both a vegetarian at the game table as well as in the game. I mean, there just aren't that many options out there to really play real vegetarian characters...

... until now.

Fun fact: Reubens with beets beat Reubens with beef

Behold, the Vegetarian descriptor! Whether you're playing Numenera, The Strange, Gods of the Fall, or Predation, I'm sure that this is the perfect descriptor for your gaming table, suitable for just about any build.  

Just imagine:

  • I am a Vegetarian Glaive who Bears a Halo of Fiber
  • I am a Vegetarian Spinner who Farms with Great Skill
  • I am a Vegetarian Savior who Works Miracles with Tofu

Literally, your character options are endless. But I know what you're thinking: "James, where are the rules for this incredibly innovative, and health conscious alternative to other descriptors?" Prepare to be amazed.

Fun fact: 1 cup of peas has 8 grams of protein

Vegetarian


When you look at a dossi, gallen, or shiul, you don't see a dinner, you see a kindred soul, experiencing the same Ninth World as the rest of your adventuring party. You have taken a vow to never consume the flesh of another creature, and have earned countless health benefits from this incredibly sustainable diet. Most of your fellow adventurers don't understand you. They take offense whenever you remind them of your eating habits, and they are constantly checking to see if you've eaten enough protein before battle. But one day they will come to their senses, and discover that imitation yol meat crumbles taste 60% like the real stuff.

You gain the following benefits:

Health Conscious: +2 to your Might Pool because of an incredibly nutritious diet.
Friends not Food: Domesticated creatures just love you! They all know, deep down, that you are absolutely no threat and that you would never consider them as a food source, even if you were lost in the Beyond with no other options. You are trained in all tasks dealing with domestic and companion animals. 
Skill: You know how to make great food with seemingly simple ingredients. You are trained in all tasks involving cooking and food preparation. 
Skill: You are trained in all positive social interaction with fellow vegetarians. It's like you just understand each other!
Inability: The difficulty of all social interaction with creature who eat meat are increased by one step. Unfortunately you just can't keep the fact that you're a vegetarian to yourself. Plus you can't not comment on how gross meat really is. Seriously, think about it... super gross.

Initial Link to the Starting Adventure: From the following list of options choose how you became involved in the first adventure:

  1. You recently prepared food for the party at a local vegetarian friendly establishment (and coffee house) and thought that they needed a skilled chef.
  2. You ran into the group at a local produce market in a nearby city, and it just so happened that you were both buying the same kind of vegetable.
  3. One of the party members hired you on as a personal trainer.
  4. It has always been your dream to meet new humans, visitants, and other beings and tell them about how great it is to be a vegetarian. 

*     *     *

So yeah, +Jennifer Walls and I are vegetarians, and I hope you got a kick out of this descriptor, whether or not you are followers of our plant-based ways. I've gotta thank +Marc Plourde and +Troy Pichelman for a short back-and-forth on Twitter today that inspired this post. You guys rock!


Saturday, September 30, 2017

Family Game Knights - Numenera Kickoff in Muullis


Returning to the Ninth World


Last night I went home... at least that's what it felt like to return to the Ninth World of Numenera. Ever since the Numenera 2 Kickstarter launched last week, I've been kicking myself for spending so much time away from the system. Not counting the booth demos that I ran at the Monte Cook Games booth at Gen Con 50, I haven't had a chance to play Numenera since our last episode of The Devil's Spine in May. Not only do I plan to rectify the lapse of our Devil's Spine campaign, I also wanted to do a little reboot of Numenera and the Cypher System at home.

So I gathered the Family Game Knights for an evening of exploration, discovery, and lots and lots of weirdness!  This would be an interesting change for our group. While six of our seven regular players were all Numenera and Cypher System veterans, this group originally banded together to smash and die in Dungeon Crawl Classics




Cyphers of Choice


So, what adventure to choose for this reentry into Numenera...

... how about Muullis: The Wayward Hamlet written by my good friend and blogger +Marc Plourde!?! 

Muullis: The Wayward Hamlet is featured in the CypherCaster Magazine, Issue #003, so go make sure you get yourself a copy on DriveThruRPG. Before we get into some potential spoilers, let me share quickly some of the best reasons for why you should consider running Muullis: The Wayward Hamlet your own group:

  1. It's a great introductory adventure into the weird of Numenera. 
  2. It's easily adaptable into any existing campaign as a side-quest adventure. 
  3. It can be set just about anywhere on the Ninth World, or even beyond the Ninth World Into the Night (with a few modifications, of course). 
  4. There is a great balance of exploration and combat. 
  5. There is a lot of room in the module for GM's to add their own flavors, or as I did, crank the weirdness factor up to 1000%! 

My way to do that cranking was to grab Injecting the Weird by Monte Cook, and then throw in a bunch of crazy modifications to areas, NPC's, and situations. This is how the village elder of Perrun ended up having the physical form of a three month old baby, despite being over eighty years old.

Ready for some SPOILERS? If you are a GM looking to run Muullis: The Wayward Hamlet, you are allowed to keep reading. Otherwise, just skip down the fan art and don't read anything else.

Remember the musical Brigadoon? Take the time travel issues of that musical, toss in some dimensionally warped people, a few dashes of dimensional monsters, and some rogue Aeon Priests and you have Muullis: The Wayward Hamlet. During the course of the adventure, the player characters discover that there is a legendary village that appears and disappears in a region of the Ninth World. The PC's eventually gain access to the village, and then find out that time is traveling much slower for the trapped occupants. Any of the village natives who leave the village are transformed into a horrific Abykos-like monstrosity. 

The village's dilemma was the result of a trio early Aeon Priests. These members of the Synod of Perfection performed an experiment sending Muullis into a temporal whirlpool. For the PC's to be successful, they need to restore the movement of time in Muullis, and return it to it's original location in the Ninth World.

As I mentioned before, I really like how this adventure is so adaptable. We ran it as a three-hour introductory session by trimming off a few mid-story encounters, but add in those encounters and this could fill a four-hour convention slot. Actually, we probably could've run the adventure as written, with all mid-story encounters, if I hadn't come up with the Sgrentipillar.


Sgrentipillar


I did not mean for these things to become such an integral part of the adventure, but they did. For our session, I used the "Herder in Trouble" scene as the introduction to the adventure. The party came across the herder, who was written to have a pack of gallen, creatures native to the Ninth World. But I wanted to turn up the weird, so I said that she had a pack of "sgrentipillars." 

When first encountered, sgrentipillars appeared to be six-foot long wooly inch-worms, kept for their soft fur. But when the PC's flipped one over to see its face, they were horrified to see a twisted human visage obviously in pain! The villagers of Perrun admitted that the sgrentipillars were strange creatures with a bizarre life cycle:

  • Egg Stages: No one claimed to know how sgrentipillars first formed, what their eggs looked like, or where they came from.
  • Larva Stage: The current state of all known sgrentipillars, partially controlled by devices called "clickers." 
  • Cocoon Stage: Achieved when the sgrentipillars are allowed to completely grow out their fur, but this never happens because of the rumored Post Cocoon Stage.
  • Post Cocoon Stage: Unknown, but believed to be terrible!

Sgrentipillar (Larva): Level 2 creature, 6 health, no attacks, produces 10 square feet of wool per week.

The players eventually learned the horrifying truth of the sgrentipillars! That they were ensnared villagers from Muullis, captured by the man-baby village elder Belcer before the Wayward Hamlet became trapped in time. The "clicker" devices allowed the villagers to be transformed into weird butterfly hybrids, and also controlled their minds.

If allowed to emerge from a cocoon (which requires breaking the clickers) a full-grown sgrentipillar becomes a beautiful sgrentifly!

Sgrentifly: Level 3 creature, 9 health, no attacks, flight, looks like a butterfly with the face of acclaimed actor Greg Kinnear.


Fan Art from the Ninth World


Before drawing this blog post to a close, I need to share the awesome fan-art created by one of our players: Ella. This drawing is her depiction of Kalain, the Strong Glaive who Wears a Sheen of Ice (a pre-gen character from The Spire of the Hunting Sound Quickstart Adventure). During the course of the adventure, Kalain befriended a sgrentipillar who she named Billy. But Billy's companionship was cut short, as he was slain by the party after being allowed to cocoon.


Closing Thoughts of Weirdness


We had so much fun diving back into Numenera last night, and if you've never had the opportunity to try this game you owe it to yourself to dive in head first. The timing couldn't be better with the Numenera 2 Discovery and Destiny Kickstarter in full swing. So if you enjoyed this post, and want to learn more, go over to the Kickstarter page, and give it a go. Numenera completely changed the way I ran my games, and this month is my fourth anniversary in the Ninth World. 

Here's to the next evolution of a wonderful game!

Friday, September 22, 2017

Player Perspective - TPK'd by Judge Evie


Stuffed on the Starless Sea


Following her incredible Dungeon Crawl Classics debut at Gen Con 50, Judge Evie went on the hunt to run another game as soon as possible. We talked about letter her run events at our local game club, the Norwin Game Knights, and agreed that it would be the perfect venue to let her build up her DCC Road Crew street cred. I thought it would be really cool if she gave +Harley Stroh's Sailors on the Starless Sea a try, as it's a great way to introduce the game to new players as well as new Judges.  

This wasn't Judge Evie's first time enjoying Sailors. Back in the summer of 2015 our family mashed Disney and DCC for the first time using this module. But it had been two years, and Evie never tried reading the adventure until this week. 


I have to admit it: the kid was really dedicated! She packed the adventure in her school backpack through the week, reading and studying during her breaks and on the bus. I even caught her earlier today laying in bed, napping with the book draped over her face. With this much diligent research and study I was pretty sure that we would get an experience faithful to the original spirit in which the adventure was published. 


I was so wrong!



I knew there was going to be trouble when I looked at her setup. She packed a bunch of extra stuffed animals in her game bag, along with her iPod, her Kindle, and four small tubs of homemade green slime. Looking at her quizzically I asked, "what is the slime for?" 

"It's for a certain part in the game," she replied. "It's also a prize." 

I shuddered in terror. 


We had five total players for the event. Six if you count Evie's friend who showed up late but got in for the final boss battle. 

I ended up with a decent set of 0-level characters: a Mutant Scout, a Robot Wanderer, and an Elf Armorer with a pair of sixteens. We were using the Crawling Under a Broken Moon pre-gens for the most part, but my special stash of 0-level characters in our big 0-level box is so mishmashed. You never know what you're going to get. 


I named my Robot Wanderer 12345 (alternatively spelled I II III IV V).  The Mutant was Trevor Buttz (named for one of player Michael's US Army basic training buddies) and my Elf was Sabra.

None survived the evening. 



Judge Evie made sure to come to the event decked out in her finest DCC Judge Swag, including her special shirt. 



Evie was very clear that the stuffed animals had a critical roll to play in the adventure. 


That pink stuffie in the picture? That was an actual stuffed animal in the game that attacked us before we even started the adventure. It was brutal too! Pretty sure it took down the first player character. 

There was a small greenish dragon that she put in front of the player with the lowest Luck score. I'm quite proud, as she got this from me! I've used the "Unlucky Dog" and the "Unlucky Squirrel" and she caught on. 

There was also a white owl that appeared mid-game just to indirectly cause carnage. The Owl had a 15 armor class and would sit on players' shoulders asking to be friends. I don't think it ever attacked anyone... at first... but we were pretty intent on killing it ourselves. Unfortunately we never managed to beat it up long enough to drop it down from the 20+ hit points my kid gave the jerk.


Wait... you don't recognize the pink stuffed animal or owl on the shoulder from Harley's original adventure? Let's cover a few of the other modifications Judge Evie made to this game:

  • The vines that attacked our player characters as we entered the keep had a lingering curse on the players. Anyone who hit them eventually had vines erupt from their body. After that first encounter Judge Evie set a timer on her iPod. After an hour of gameplay one of the PC's had their chest explode. Then another. The vines then took control of the PC forcing them to attack their friends.
  • Oh, that last scene wouldn't have been so hard if Judge Evie hadn't turned the owl against us at the same exact time. 
  • When I tried removing one of the Beastmen banners down from the outside of the keep, Judge Evie ruled that there were jellybean colored termites waiting behind the fabric. They ate my character through the hip, and chased the rest of the PC's into the keep. 
  • In the original module there is a small, burned down chapel on one of the keep's inner walls. On the outside there is a sign that says "Repent." Evie decided that this sign actually said "PAIN" and that there was a "Welcome Mat" on the floor just outside. When one of the PC's lifted the mat and saw a big red button, she pushed it. This caused the PC with the lowest Luck score to just explode, even though they were nowhere near the button. 
 

When we were running low on time and characters, Judge Evie pulled out the rest of the stuffed animals and declared that the Cult Leader was the big, pink, bear-unicorn. The rest of the stuffies were cultists. Within ten minutes the entire party was dead. 

No punches pulled. No quarter. No relief.

Just death.


Here's our pile of the damned. I'm starting to think that DCC Inferno Road had a lasting impact on this kid that the Norwin Game Knights is going to feel for years to come. 

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Banished to the Purple Planet - Part One


Under a Weirdling Sun


Barsoom. Arrakis. Athas. All these sandy waste-worlds would be considered absolute paradises in contrast to the Purple Planet. Should the wasting rays of a dying crimson sun not kill you, the rampaging Kith warbands surely will. The Purple Planet is the ultimate proving ground for any Dungeon Crawl Classics adventuring party, so let's test the mettle of the legendary members of THE Free Company.

Peril on the Purple Planet is an epic DCCRPG box set devised by +Harley Stroh. The adventure is a hex crawl, so player characters get to explore a completely open and lush world. Characters must discover artifacts, make alliances, battle terrifying worms, and sustain the deadly sun's rays if they are to ever make their way back home.

I first picked up this beautiful treasure at Gen Con 2015, and to date I've run the 0-level funnel Escape from the Purple Planet three glorious times. But the blasted sands call to me, and my soul craves more Purple Planet... wait... not just more... ALL of the Purple Planet. Banished to the Purple Planet shall be our quest to experience the contents of the Peril on the Purple Planet Boxed Set. It's a lot to dig through, but I think we're ready. 

Care to hear about this week's banishment? Read on!

The Banished





Banished to the Purple Planet


The Purple Planet can only be reached through extraordinary means. For The Free Company, their journey began with their meeting of an old friend: the God Emperor Razoul.

Readers of the Great Sunken City Omnibus Tour may remember Razoul's entrance into the campaign during our fourth session of The Ooze Pits of Jonas Gralk. Of course, back then he went by the name Ichabod Crane. The Free Company met Ichabod, a lowly cleric who worshipped a Cthulhu-shaped potato (the Potathulhu) after liberating Castle Bellows. Ichabod journeyed with the the company for several weeks before regaining his sanity, revealing that he was actually a psion named Razoul who had gained an alternate, clerical personality after a particularly harsh power backlash. 

Razoul returned to Slither's end and filled the power vacuum left by Mayor Manse's departure, becoming the mayor himself. During the battle with Salissak at Serpent's End, it was Razoul's telekinetic blast that finished off the snake-god. After the struggle, many of the lost townsfolk started to worship Aristemis, through the guidance of cleric Ssof Rehtaf. But there were those that came to worship Razoul and his power... they called him the God Mayor

When Floyd Pink, Lil Hammy, Watson, Screaming Otto, Imric, and Nicodemus all left Slither's End to confront the Mist Men, Razoul stayed behind. Concerned about his comrades' failure to return, Razoul psychically probed time itself, and learned that his friends were lost in time and would not return for hundreds of years. The God Mayor did not want The Free Company to be separated, so he devised a means to put the rest of its members in a temporal stasis so that they could be saved for future use. At first this stasis was mostly psionic, however later it would be through advanced cryo-technology. 

It was important that the God Mayor kept the remaining members of The Free Company safe, for as he gazed into the future he saw that they would play a very important role.

Fast forward five hundred years, and much as changed. The God Mayor rose through the ranks of God-liegehood, from God Lord to God Duke to God King and eventually to God Emperor of all the known lands. From the Great City to the Sunken City (which he un-sunk to the Shudder Mountains to the Eastern Forest. His new empire is ruled through wondrous magic-technology and the God Emperor's own psychically-enabled divine might. 

But controlling an empire isn't enough for the God Emperor Razoul... he wants to control worlds. One such world continues proves to be particularly elusive, and yet full of arcane wonder: the legendary Purple Planet! The greenstones of that world call to Razoul, across all of space and time. The God Emperor wishes to transcend his physical form, but to do so, he needs the power of these greenstones. But there is only one adventuring party powerful/crazy enough to successfully return these gems from the Purple Planet...

... that's right: THE Free Company.

I'm pretty sure that the Realms of the God Emperor are going to be my default DCC setting for quite some time. I seriously love that this campaign has created such a vibrant world and universe that I can use forever! Players of my Shudder Mountains campaign will note that I've mentioned the God Emperor before, and this is him. I'm basing the God Emperor's Great City on the Empire from Final Fantasy VI. The God Emperor himself looks a lot like Xerxes from 300, but with a giant head that he needs aids to keep propped up. Super sexy!

So let's get to the happenings from last night's game.

At the conclusion of our last session, only two player characters remained conscious after Cedric the Skull Knight and Right Hand of the God Emperor gassed the party: Watson and Floyd. Cedric ordered the characters to breathe deep the gas, so that they could be properly subdued. When asked why this was happening, Cedric declared that although Razoul would be happy to see his former compadres, the Skull Knight had concerns that The Free Company would do the right thing. Cedric still remembered calling out to Watson for aid, five hundred years prior when he was stuck to Mingus' shoulder. 

Realizing that there was no way out, Floyd and Watson gave in to the inevitable. 

Four members of The Free Company awoke at the same time: Floyd, Lil Hammy, Otto, and Watson. Their room was pristine and they each found themselves in beautiful beds. At each bedside, a robed woman waited with a cup of a steaming hot beverage. The characters each got out of bed, drank the tea, and were dressed in special robes covered in calligraphy. Strangely enough, each character's robe's writing told of their tales of glory. The attendants admitted that the God Emperor thought they would like the robes, as their stories were probed from their minds while they slept. 

"One moment... you did what?" Otto shouted after finding out what had happened. The women simply smiled, all in unison (they did everything in unison), and led the characters out into a hallway. They all traveled down the hall, onto an elevator, and then to the throne room of the God Emperor himself. 

The God Emperor Razoul seemed pleased to meet the awakened members of The Free Company. He assured the characters that their friends were indeed safe and secure, carting in Nicodemus and Imric (strangely enough still asleep), as well as some frozen cryo-pods containing the rest of the team: Gastronomix, Ssof Rehtaf, Gordon, Garik, Korlos, Wayne, and StarRider.

Lil Hammy asked if the God Emperor still had the dreaded Potathulhu, the Cthulhu-tainted potato from Ichabod's past. Razoul stated that he did, and when it was carted out in its own, much smaller cryo-pod, Lil Hammy charged over and stabbed it through the glass. The God Emperor looked pleased, and offered Lil Hammy something magnificent: the chance to worship him as a living god. Lil Hammy knelt down and said the words.

"I pledge to worship the God Emperor Razoul and all his interests."

With that, the God Emperor reached into Lil Hammy's genetic code, and made him "lil" no more. The pig knight grew in size and stature, becoming the size of a full-grown human. 

The God Emperor then explained his need for The Free Company to the party. He talked about the greenstones that he needed from the Purple Planet, and said that he had sent other adventuring parties across time and space, only for them to not return. He offered gold and glory should they return with the magical gems... as well as great gifts before the party departed that would aid them on their quest.

Not having any reason to say "no", The Free Company agreed.  Since Hammy had destroyed the Potathulhu, the God Emperor proclaimed that there would be a great feast of potato au gratin that evening. At dinner, the God Emperor bestowed his boons to the remaining members of the party. 

For Floyd Pink, the God Emperor revealed that he had worked with Yuri the Blacksmith to forge the long sought after Rock Demon Shield. For Otto, the God Emperor gifted a seashell that, if screamed into, would allow the warrior to cough out a magic axe made of pure "scream". For Watson, the God Emperor gave the wizard the three components necessary to form a patron bond with Aquilia, the great eagle: a guava, a meercat, and a golden halberd. 

Some of the part members enjoyed the potathulhu au gratin, albeit with bizarre side-effects. All those who ate of the starchy goodness found themselves bolstered physically (1d3 permanent hit points), but with weird physical abnormalities (minor corruption.) 

After dinner, the God Emperor declared that the party would leave in the morning. While walking back to their bedchambers, Screaming Otto tried putting the moves on one of the weird female attendants to Razoul, but his advances were rebuffed. Poor Otto!

The next morning, the entire party was taken to a great room filled with a raised platform. The God Emperor Razoul gave Watson a golden rod, and told the party that they were to step on the platform and...

... and Hammy stepped on the platform and disappeared. 

The God Emperor laughed at the Pig Paladin's enthusiasm, but admitted that there was more to say. They were to step on the platform and they would be teleported to the Purple Planet. There was supposed to be an identical platform on the other side, complete with a control panel that would accept the golden rod as a trigger to bring everyone back home.  One by one the members of The Free Company stepped on the platform, and the sleeping bodies of the other members were tossed on by the attendants soon after.

It should be noted that nothing on the other side of the portal appeared to look ANYTHING like what the God Emperor stated. The party popped out of the space-time tunnel into a dusty old room. There was no platform, no control panel, no sign of anyone else being in the room for ages. Just dust, foul air, and a pair of staircases leading to giant, leaden doors: one up, one down. 

Hammy searched the door to the south, and managed to push it open with his piggy might. What was revealed was completely alien.

The party stood atop a platform, on a pyramid reaching two-hundred feet into the pink sky. A great, purple and pink sandy waste lay before them, grimly illuminated by a weirdling, crimson sun. Craggy mountains rose in the west, and a bizarre forest appeared in the east. At the base of the pyramid, a pair of screaming, feral warbands of cat-beast humanoids prepared to go to war with each other. 

The party decided to let the warbands "do their thing," and refrained from choosing sides. They closed the door to the pyramid platform and hid inside, waiting for everything to blow over. Eventually only nine bestial humanoids remained, and they ascended the pyramid in victory. When they opened the door at the platform, they laid eyes on The Free Company.

Hammy stood forward bravely, raising his long-sword and proclaiming the holy might of the God Emperor Razoul, hoping to turn the beastmen away. It didn't work. The humanoids took this as a threat and charged. 

The creatures fought with inhuman strength, nearly slaying Hammy and Otto. One member of the tribe, the warlord, had an insane ray-gun that could disintegrate matter itself. He tried using it on Floyd, but the dark energy blast missed the warrior. By the time The Free Company found itself victorious, reality washed over them all one-by-one: this new world was truly a vicious land!

Just in case there was important information to be learned from prisoners, the party kept two of the beastmen (sleeping from Watson's spellcasting) as hostages. 

After searching the corpses, the party tried the stairwell to the north but the door was locked. Instead of a key hole, there was a pad of eight runic buttons. It took several minutes, but eventually they figured out the right combination to open the doorway. On the other side, a long dead figure sat on a chair, their head raised high and mouth agape. Silvery tendrils of light ascended from the figure's mouth into the blackness above. At the side of the chair was a pedestal, and on the pedestal a cracked green gem. 

Was this a greenstone that The Free Company was searching for?

Who was this man on the throne, and what are the wisps of silver coming out of his mouth?

Who were those beast men, and are there more of them?

All shall be answered for those BANISHED TO THE PURPLE PLANET!


Adventure Notes


The Rock Demon Shield: An artifact created by Yuri the Blacksmith, who was also employed by the God Mayor Razoul for a time. The Rock Demon Shield is a modified magical item forged from the Rock Demon's Shell. It functions as a Large Shield in some ways.
  • +3 (+2 natural, +1 magical) AC Bonus, -2 Check Penalty, Speed -5', d12 Fumble Die
  • Being struck by the Rock Demon Shield causes the "Touch of Whimsy". This can be done through either a Shield Bash or a roll of a 4 on a Deed Die when the PC makes an attack roll. 
  • The Touch of Whimsy unbalances the target for 1d3 rounds, in which their actions suffer a -1D penalty.

The Axe of Pure Scream: Looks like a seashell to start. To get the axe, Otto must scream into it. He then coughs out a magic axe. An artifact created by the God Emperor Razoul, made from Screaming Otto's own screaming. 
  • A +1 magical Battle Axe that has the power of Scare, a 2nd level Wizard spell. 
  • The wielder makes a spell check at their level + 2 + Intelligence modifier to cast Scare.
  • This can be done as many times per day until it is lost, and is still subject to Corruption rolls. 
  • In turn, Corruption may be used to imbue the Axe. Otto must scream into the Axe once per day.


Quotes



"So... he's fully skeleton, and somewhat sassy?" - Marc after seeing that Cedric looks a lot like Papyrus from Undertale.

"He's the adventurer formerly known as Lil Hammy now." - Craig's title is better than just "Hammy."

Jonata - "It's for probe?" - 
Andy - "It's one seashell, not three."

"Hammy now can fly?" - Jonata after Andy's character Hammy gained a minor corruption giving him big elephant ears.

"I don't want a porn." - This is how Jonata described his advances on the attendant. I guess he didn't want the Judge to go into details. 



In Memoriam 

  • None this game