Thursday, November 28, 2013

Fudge Fudge Fudge Fudge Vampire: Hackmaster Campaign Log

"Only I didn't say 'fudge.' I said THE word, the big one, the queen-mother of dirty words, the 'F-dash-dash-dash' word!"

So, we reconvened for Hackmaster, and it was an abbreviated group; Ted the Wizard and Elwyn the Thief were both absent, so we began to explore Quarrytown on our own. I went looking for lodging, finding a hostelry with a talkative hostess and a pretty reasonable price per evening (nine copper per evening, which is pretty reasonable when you've got seven people and get two beds and a meal for each of them out of it). Fredykia told stories in the marketplace (Oratory, Monster Lore, and Ancient History), and we picked up some rumors, including the theft of a bronze statue from the Lynx Gate, and that the Pallisade stockyards had been suffering some depredations. We opted to put off the trek to the nearby tower (where a rumor said an evil totem had been found), and instead investigate the Pallisade.

I (Mark) worked REALLY hard to not metagame, since I know the normal adventure involves a pack of leech-men. But scouting around, we found a set of human-sized tracks leading straight up to the wall, and all the dead animals have two puncture wounds in the neck. We decided to stake out the place, sleeping through the day at our hostel and constructing a blind in the field for the evening. We waited a number of nights for it, and then we saw a lone person stumbling drunkenly along the same track we'd followed before.

I was all for confronting him outside, but Fredi and Ava decided to see what would happen. He walked to the wall and smoothly climbed up it, so Ava tried to tangle him with a spell; he broke free without seeming to notice it. He then ensorcelled the guard, and as we fired our weapons, turned into a giant spider and disappeared into the Pallisade.

We, as brave fools, gave chase. I boosted everyone up the relatively short wall (only 10'; really easy), then scrambled up myself. A horse was down, and we gave chase through the Pallisade; the spider disappeared and was replaced by a rat, which ran to the smithy; a bird then exited the roof of the smithy and flew away... getting a massively overpumped Magical Projectile slammed into it, which it shrugged off as it flew away.

Before that, we were kind of hoping that we were dealing with something else. However, after some discussion (and a lot of cursing), we decided we were gonna start buying a metric fudge-ton of garlic.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Talky Talky, Walky, Walky. Lizard?

Oh, boy, it's been a long time since we played, and some developments in my life have curtailed a few of my other gaming pursuits. However, we got together on Saturday to play a bit of Hackmaster.

When last we played, we'd just freed a young woman from her pirate captors. Cutting her gag and bonds, we find that she's the daughter of the mayor/innkeeper/store owner back in Salt Haven/View/Flat/whatever (we sort of lost track of what town it actually was). She wasn't so much "kidnapped" as "ran away from home with her now-dead pirate boyfriend". Deciding that it's impractical to boat down to town, we trek back through the dungeon to bring her home to her father. As we're leaving the dungeon, we're stopped by at least a dozen goblins who, in pigin Merchant (and, eventually, some dwarven, which is close to goblin), they demand we leave their home and never come back. We bring girly back to dad, and they promptly throw a screaming hissy fit at each other, which we somewhat manage to cool, or at least get them on shouting terms. Grimwulf offers her hire as his cook, if she doesn't want to stay with dad.

Then begins a very long discussion about bringing tribute to the goblins that I never quite got the reason for. We felt unable to fight the lot of them, I get that, but someone wanted to negotiate with them for some damn fool reason, and decided to give them a chunk of our treasure. The goblins, however, decided that they didn't want our treasure, they just wanted us to leave them alone. Fair enough. Deciding that there wasn't much we could do there, we headed towards the county seat, known as Frandor's Keep, after purchasing a mule from our friendly innkeeper.

Long trip; many days. We mostly walked, encountering pilgrims who told us how horrible the goblin problem was, and encountering nothing ourselves save a derelict gate to nothing, some anomalous tracks of a giant lizard coming from the river (in what amounts to Idaho in March), and miles and miles of miles and miles. We stopped at Kar Mandri, failing to marry off the tag-along village girl to any of the innkeeper's sons, and then headed towards the keep. We were denied entrance, however, as someone had tried to kill the Count, and they were requiring papers to enter the keep proper. We spent some time talking with folks outside the stockade, and adjourned for the evening, our eyes turned towards Quarrytown. described by the guards as "A den of thieves, if you ask me."