Sunday, October 13, 2013

Skeletons, Spiders, Pirates and Rescue!

So, we pushed on tonight in Hackmaster. Due to a Florida vacation, Fredikya's player wasn't with us, but we soldiered on. We began in the room of the sarcophagi, where we'd encountered the flying dagger, before. We explored the next, and a skeleton arose, trashing our remaining mage while the rest of the party gathered around and beat it with sticks (except the thief, who kept trying to kill it with a short sword... not so effective, though she hit more often than we did with our staves and maces). The mage was so banged up that we retreated to town, curing him of his wounds and taking a break.

Returning to the sarcophagi, we discovered more skeletons, but with no animation, just treasure. A well-made broadsword (which no one can use, but I intend to use as a rich gift), and a suit of chainmail that fit our fighter. He felt a lot more confident in the better armor. We also found a necklace (which the priest of the Bear refused to test for choking properties on her pet rat), two rings, and a coronet (which we determined was a crown, not a small trumpet). Now well swimming in rich stuff, we pressed on. We fought a massive spider, and my priest of the Traveler got his first initiative under 10! But the fighter took a single point of damage early in the fight, and managed to pull off two strikes in short order, both of which massively penetrated, dropping the brute to the ground. Searching the spider, we found a nice dagger (that I'll probably learn how to use, just because).

We soldiered on, finding the equipment of our mage (who had been kidnapped and tied up sessions ago), then an underground river (that we declined to cross) and a way back to the room whose doors are controlled by a statue. Exploring further, we found our way to a grotto where four pirates argued. A daring plan had Elwyn and Sevlen lead the pirates back to our fighter, shooting slings and arrows (literally) to draw them back. Three of the four were game; the fourth tried to get away, but was TOPped by a shot from Elwyn. I swam out towards the boat... but got caught by the octopus of the grotto. As he pulled me closer, I managed to cast a Safe Haven and wriggle free, swimming back to the pirate's boat.

In the boat was a TOPd pirate and a tied-up girl, so I rowed back to the shore, where we found some of the pirate's booty, including a scad of silver and copper, some gems and jewelry, and a few bits of sundry treasure. We will start the next adventure sans Elwyn and Ted, but with Fredikya back, freeing a fair maiden and planning our return with loot.

(Sorry for the poor story-telling; I am getting this on screen before I collapse. SO TIRED)

Friday, October 4, 2013

Love Songs about Dwarves

So, one of the on-going arguments in fantasy gaming is "Do dwarven women have beards?" To which the answer is, of course, "The pretty ones do." I like for dwarven women to have beards because I think it emphasizes that they're an alien species, with a different conception of beauty than is common in human society. Elves are the little waif-fu human fantasies... dwarves are something else entirely, eschewing human notions of beauty for their own.

As the song says... Hairy face makes for Dwarven Beauty.

A few years ago (thinking about it, the first goes back more than a decade, to when I was in school), I did a number of filks based around fantasy gaming, including some songs about dwarven women. Here they are, for the modern reader:

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Scary Spider, Levels, Flying Dagger

So, we reconvened on Saturday to play a bit more Hackmaster. When last we left our heroes, there were a group of goblins that we were failing to sneak up on, and we'd just rolled some initiatives (in my case, truly horrible initiatives). I was bit annoyed at my GM, because I figured she'd screwed me on the initative die... but that's before the spider exploded into the room and started trying to eat me. Grimwulf charged forward to distract the spider, taking a slight wound in the process, but we then retreated, leaving the goblins (who came out to attack the spider) to play with our new friend.

At this point, we concede that most of us are out of spells, lowish on HP, and kinda tired of the dark, so we head back to Salt Haven to spend a couple weeks licking our wounds and learning a few things (all except Ted, who didn't quite have the XP). While there, Fredykai acquired a crossbow, and we got a request from the mayor/innkeeper/sheriff to deal with the river pirates once the days warmed up and they started preying again. This is right in line with the Traveler's ethos, so I'm certainly looking forward to it.

Rested and leveled, we returned to the Tower Basement. This time, however, we chose not to tread well-worn paths, and continued into the other parts of the basement. We came to realize that the ruins were far older than the tower had been (bolstering our observation from last session about the age of the astrological charts), and stumbled across a room of sarcophagi. Being cheery tomb robbers (see my article Corpses and Caches to understand the theological underpinnings of "It's ok to loot dead people if no one knows their name"), we levered one of the sarcophagi open, with Grimwulf standing ready to smash the skeleton inside if it objected to our stealing the pretty dagger on its chest. Instead, the dagger objected, chasing us around the room for a moment. We smacked it down, and it got back up in a moment. We bound it in a sheath, it popped out and started chasing us again. Finally, we sealed it back in the sarcophagus, and had to call it a night. Five sarcophagi and many rooms await us, with a need to smash pirates ahead.

EDIT: A bit about the post name. Over on the KenzerCo Forums, Jolly started a "Describe your last session in five words". It's a little bit silly, but it does help to summarize what happened.