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Great Wyrm
 
Joined: Mon Sep 15, 2008 8:27 am
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Location: Bristol, UK
 Post subject: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Framework
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 7:14 pm 
After a little rest while one of my compatriots ran a few sessions, I am back running my party through the Nentir Vale. This is the start of my own campaign, designed to take them from lvl 4 to lvl 6, so I can run the Madness at Gardmore Abbey. It uses some elements from H2 and some taken from recent Dungeon magazines.

Prologue
After defeating Kalarel in the Keep on the Shadowfell and venturing into the Chaos Scar to recover the Hammer of Ivak Stoneblood, the party of adventurers return to Winterhaven surrounded in an aura of success and confidence. The guards manning the gate excitedly wave them through and the market place is busier than they have ever seen it. Farmers and traders are no longer hiding in their homes, oppressed by unknown magicks, but are out and about, enjoying the sunshine and indulging in commerce.

Back at Thair Coalstriker's smithy, they meet with Torak Banehammer, the dwarven cleric of Moradin, and return to him the Hammer of Ivak. Gratefully and reverently he takes it off their hands. As promised he hands over an equally powerful item that once belonged to the hero Marauk Burrin, who was a Champion of Kord. As Haagan takes the weapon into his hands he feels not only the power of the mystic relic, but the power of Kord himself, as the god bestows on him a unique and special boon.

Torak Banehammer then introduces the party to a young dwarf by the name of Rangrim. He explains that Rangrim is a Paladin of Moradin and that his talents have outgrown the problems of their small settlement, and after seeking spiritual guidance, he believes that Rangrim should join the party in aiding the peoples of the Nentir Vale. Assuming they accept, of course. Rangrim is immediately invited into their ranks and they head off to Wrafton's Inn to celebrate.

While sorting out their accommodation for the night, the party receive two invitations, one for dinner with Lord Padraig and one from Bairwin Wildarson. Hoping Bairwin's invite will be shorter in nature, they pop over to his "Grand Shoppe".

Bairwin Wildarson, it seems, has a problem. He sources many of his more exotic items from his business parter in Thunderspire Mountain. This normally works out very well, except that his trade is currently being "blocked" by one of the Mountains enforcers, an ogre by the name of Brugg. Bairwin has an item for delivery to Brugg and until the ogre receives it, his partner is being prevented from making any exports at all! Even more frustrating is that Bairwin sent the item ages ago. Its journey seems to have stalled in Fallcrest. The adventurers are heading to Fallcrest tomorrow are they not? Could they get his parcel from the barge captain Fredegar? And ensure its speedy deliver to Thunderspire Mountain and his business partner Gendar? There shouldn't be any problems but if the party agree, Bairwin offers them two Rituals up front as payment. The task is simple and on their way, so the adventurers accept the job and the rituals.

Later the party spend the evening with Lord Padraig and his family. The Lord is eager to show his appreciation for their efforts one last time, but also asks if they would kindly deliver some letters to the Lord Warden of Fallcrest. The party, of course, accept.


Fallcrest
The journey to Fallcrest is uneventful and the five adventurers begin to show their new compatriot the delights of their home, mainly by going from one Inn to the next. They deliver Lord Padraig's letters to Lord Warden Faren Markelhay and are invited to an audience. One of Lord Padraig's letters explained the troubles that beset Winterhaven and the adventurers role is removing them. Warden Faren asks many an inciteful question. All the while pretending not to notice the noisy wind emanating from the drow Happy Angel (in fact a prank pulled by the Mage Moonscale).

Bairwin's instructions to the party said to meet the barge captain at the House of the Sun temple. When they arrive, they find not the captain, but an impatient runner who informs them the captain is too scared to leave his barge. Would they come and meet him at his barge, moored in the lower quay?


The Lower Quay
The party arrive at the quay, to see the barge captain being "shaken down" by a group of rough looking (but unarmed) men. Happy Angel is quick to rush to the barge captain's side but the lead rough, is equally quick to say they are just discussing business. The captain seems too scared to disagree. The rough challenges Happy Angel to a bare knuckle fight, no armour. Happy Angel refuses, the tension escalates and the inevitable fight breaks out.

Pontuus is the quickest off the mark, charging the leader and putting his magical horned helm to good use. Happy Angel follows almost immediately and between the two of them , the leader (Devlin Jack) is already bloodied. Devlin uses his crooked skulduggery to shift out of harms way, behind some of his boys, and takes a breather (second wind).

Alykacha dodges between the lieutenants to attack the leader Devlin Jack, but he is on the defensive and the attack misses. The lieutenants advance quickly now, moving in to attack the adventurers. At first they appear to be unarmed, but at the last moment they grow claws! One pounces on Moonscales and misses. Another rushes the barge captain and in a cowardly assault from behind, rips out the halfling's throat! The captain falls to the ground dead. At the same time to the south, another group of roughs try to flank Haagan, striking him with claws and clubs.

Finding it hard to believe the evil that he has seen, Rangrim issues a divine challenge to the evil shifters while at the same time delivering a powerful strike to Devlin Jack. Moonscale scars Devlin Jack and one of his lieutenants with burning jolt of lightning while Haagan obliterates one of the thugs with a single blow of his powerful warhammer.

Seeing enough of the party are engaging Devlin Jack and his lieutenants, Pontuus and charges south to join Haagan, flanking one of the shapeshifters before stabbing it with his spear.

Happy Angel decides enough is enough and calls her most powerful magicks down on Devlin Jack. Waves of hellfire roll forth from her hand and the shifter is reduced to a charcoal lump. Unfortunately his lieutenants continue to fight on, using their skulduggery to position themselves where they can deliver powerful attacks on the party.

Moonscale joins Pontuus and Haagan, and crushes one of the shifters with his tail, leaving Pontuus the task of delivering the killing blow. Meanwhile to the north, Rangrim, Happy Angel and Alykacha take down the last their foes. Alykacha despatching the final one, in isolation, in her cloud of darkness.

The evil shifters are dead, but so too is the barge captain. His halfling crew and the porters on the docks explain to the adventurers how these thugs have been moving into the area, demanding protection money and taking a cut from all cargo transported through the town. They even "confiscate" cargo, and they have taken Bairwin's parcel to a Bonded Warehouse they appear to have taken as their headquarters.

XP
Devlin Lvl 5 Skirmisher xp 200
3 x Lvl 3 Lowtown Kneebreakers xp 150
2 x Lvl 3 Razerclaw Jacks xp 150
Total: 950

Treasure
140gp and an Augmenting Whetstone (75gp)


Image


EDIT: In case you are wondering, "What is that strange thing on the map?" Its a Human Powered Crane.

Example One
Example Two

Imagine two humans in the wheel with a bunch of halflings hanging on ropes, twisting it left and right as they haul cargo off the river barges and onto the docks or waiting wagons.

The map also uses barges from the Drive-Thru River Barge set


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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:36 am 
I was quite pleased with our second encounter. I ran it across two levels of a warehouse. I had the two floors displayed on one map and used slightly transparent tokens to represent the position of players and npc on the other level. Then a simple bit of macro code in an "onTokenMove" library kept their positions in synch. This worked flawlessly, although I did reveal the FOW on the second map manually. But given the square nature of the map, this only needed to be done the once.

Bonded Warehouse
The party of adventurers make their way to the Bonded Warehouse that has been taken over by the River Rats. The warehouse is a two story stone building with a single story annex. Slowly they creep into the outer annex, where there should have been bureaucrats and the paper work of officialdom, they just find dust. From beyond the inner door, the sound of laughter and revelry reaches the party's ears. Happy Angel gently opens the door, but they are seen by an attentive River Rat enforcer. Alykacha attempts to bluff the River Rats with the promise of gold, but they laugh and show their claws!

As the deception fails, the adventurers charge into the main warehouse. In the centre, boxes and crates are piled high and round the edges of the room a number of River Rats look down on the party from the first floor walk-way. Pontuus and Happy Angel round on the first Razor Claw, their blows bloody it in short measure. However, the creature is tough and it retaliates with vicious claws.

The River Rats react quickly to the incursion. Clearly they wouldn't be bold enough to take over a customs building, unless they thought they could hold it. Two guttersnipes jump down from the walk-way and fling nets at the intruders. Alykacha neatly dodges to one side, but Rangrim finds himself trapped. A tall and confident seeming halfling directs the River Rats from above. He throws poisoned daggers at Pontuus and then flips down onto the cargo boxes in the centre of the room, in the mistaken belief that the unusual terrain will provide him some advantage. Pontuus takes the bait and climbs onto the boxes, the extra reach of his vicious spear cancelling out any benefit gained from the halfling's acrobatics.

A claustrophobic fight develops round the entangled dwarf as Rangrim, Happy Angel and Haagan exchange blows with a number of Razor Claws and net wielding Guttersnipes. Moonscale inflicts a number of punishing strikes with lightning and magical force, but the Razor Claws tenaciously fight on. Proving themselves to be all the more dangerous once they are badly hurt.

Alykacha wins her fight with her first guttersnipe and jumps up to the walk-way to pursue a second and show that anything they can do, she can do better. Meanwhile the halfling leader, Kelson, decides against fighting one-on-one with the angry looking barbarian. He didn't put together a street gang just to die in foolish displays of over-confidence. So he stabs Pontuus with his short sword and darts away to the warehouse floor, from where he proceeds to throw more poisoned daggers, this time at Happy Angel. Now free from his net, Rangrim jumps in the way of the daggers, taking the damage himself while hoping his tough dwarven constitution can resist the River Rat poison.

A number of River Rats are now standing close to their leader Kelson and Moonscale seizes his opportunity to lob a crackling sphere of shocking electricity into their midst, scarring them with near maximum damage! The River Rats numbers are beginning to fall and Kelson realises the fight may not be going his way. He retaliates by throwing poisoned daggers at the dragonborn mage, hoping to take down the party's artillery. But Moonscale shrugs off the damage and with Rangrim's aid shrugs off the effects of the poison too.

In the corner battle, the Razor Claws are not going down without a fight and one strikes a critical blow to Happy Angel. The drow drops to the ground (having just taken 30 dmg) and might have bled to death but for the timely intervention of the Warpriest Haagan, whose divine power saw the Hexblade almost instantly back on her feet.

Kelson is almost alone now, penned in on all sides and illuminated by the flickering purple glow of Happy Angel's Darkfire. He grimly fights on, neither asking for quarter nor being offered it, the murderous cut-throat finally succumbing to Pontuus, the barbarian he so wisely tried to avoid. On the walk-way above, Alykacha trades blows with the last of the River Rats. Dispatching it as is almost traditional now, in her cloud of darkness.

Surrounded by the wealth of Fallcrest, the adventurers do the honourable thing and return control of the warehouse to the authorities. As they search the warehouse, Moonscale notices that one of the Razor Claws was wearing cloth armour with magical properties that the villain was obviously unaware and amongst the crates and barrels they locate the wooden puzzle-box that can only be Bairwin's parcel. These are the only things they take. They later hear that a number of minor officials have gone missing, the blood stains in their homes the only indication that they didn't willingly cooperate with the murderous River Rats.

XP
Kelson Lvl 6 Elite Skirmisher xp 500
3 x Lvl 3 Razerclaw Jacks xp 150
3 x Lower Quay Guttersnipes xp 150
Total: 1400

Treasure
Bairwin's parcel
+1 Bloodthread Cloth Armour


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Code:
[h,if( findToken(token.name + " shadow") != "" ): moveToken(getTokenX()+ if(getTokenX() < 600, 1200, -1200), getTokenY(),1, token.name + " shadow")]


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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2013 9:12 am 
Good to know it all worked flawlessly. Nice battlemaps too :)


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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2013 9:29 am 
I really like the transparent token method that you used.

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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2013 6:48 am 
After the fancy tricks of last weeks session, I was a little worried this week might be too simple, too easy. But sometimes simple works just as well. The party had just gone up a level so they had new stuff to play with and significant non-combat stuff to do, so a simple combat worked very well.

The Undermountain Road
After successfully ridding Fallcrest of the threat of a new criminal gang, the party of adventurers have retrieved their parcel but lack directions to deliver it. Happy Angel and Moonscale remember a scholar named Parle Cranewing, who approached them to map the Keep on the Shadowfell. Perhaps he knows the way? And didn't he offer money for the map they produced? Better find him quickly!

They head to the Bluemoon Ale House, a place frequented by many of the city's halfling porters, where they find a warm welcome. Eventually Cranewing appears and Happy Angel and Moonscale show him the map they produced. The scholar is extremely pleased with their work (Dungeoneering critical), happily hands over the promised 250 gold pieces and yes, he does know of Thunderspire Mountain and can easily provide directions. Unfortunately for the money-hungry adventurers his familiarity means he doesn't want them to map it for him, the place being something of an open secret amongst traders and merchants in the area.

Thunderspire is the largest mountain of the Old Hills and deep within its heart resides the ancient minotaur city of Saruun Khel. In its upper halls a mysterious order of wizards known as the Mages of Saruun have established a secretive stronghold called the Seven-Pillared Hall. Within its bounds they brutally enforce a neutral zone which has allowed the Hall to grow into a prosperous centre of commerce as merchants passing along the Trade Road shelter there and do business.

With their destination located the party prepare for their next excursion. Haagan gathers the items the party wishes to dispose of and uses his considerable negotiating skills to get a decent price, then he and Moonscale retire into seclusion with their ritual books, Rangrim's plate armour and some residuum and later appear with a suit of +1 plate.

The next day the group heads out for Thunderspire Mountain. The route is simple and the travelling easy. When they arrive under the shadow of the Old Hills they turn off the Trade Road onto the Vale Road, which eventually leads them to the Minotaur Gate. Carved out of the mountain, the gate stands supported by two giant minotaur statues that glower at all who pass below. Their directions take them onwards, into the heart of the mountain and a tunnel known as the Road of Lanterns which should lead directly to the Seven Pillared Hall. 10 foot tall demonic statues line the route as do the copper lanterns with give the road its name and its eerie green glow.

Old Acquaintances
The party are barely half way to the Hall when they hear a voice calling threateningly from one of the many darkened side passages, "Get back here you little runt. You are ours now. Give yourself up and I promise not to break anything when I beat you." Before the group can discuss the issue, Happy Angel runs into the darkness towards the voice. After no more than a moments thought, the rest of the team chase after her. The Drow Hexblade soon finds the owner of the voice as she rounds a corner to find four Hobgoblin soldiers and a Hobgoblin Warcaster trying to flush a halfling out of hiding. The halfling seemingly to have climbed up and taken refuge in a damaged part of the dungeon wall.

As the Hobgoblins stare at Happy Angel in startled disbelief, Alykacha rounds the corner and fires a crossbow bolt in their direction but misses. Pontuus holds his action to let the Mage engage first and Moonscale steps forward and blasts three soldiers and the warcaster with his Shocking Sphere. The spell rapidly becoming a favourite as it successfully strikes all its intended targets, criticalling one of the soldiers.

While the hobgoblins are still juddering from the jolt, Pontuus charges the lead soldier but is momentarily distracted as he recognises their markings. These are Bloodreavers! The same slavers they encountered in Winterhaven. The Warcaster tries to regain the initiative by blasting Pontuus off his feet, but barely scratches him.

Happy Angel decides to unleash her newest, most powerful enchantments and two enormous tentacles of ice erupt out of the ground, whipping round the heads of the hobgoblins. Exerting additional control, she commands the nearest tentacle to strike at the Warcaster, it obeys, lifting the creature off the ground and wrapping it in its freezing embrace.

Haagan and Rangrim both charge the Hobgoblin soldiers, Haagan providing them with their second taste of lightning while the Dwarven Paladin narrowly misses. The solders attempt to retaliate but the cold from the tentacles restricts their movements and only one successfully finds a target, connecting the Paladin with a strike that would knock a lesser mortal off their feet.

Alykacha darts past the hobgoblins, her first stab failing to penetrate their plate armour but as Happy Angel extols her to eviscerate the slavers, she finds a weak spot and her dagger ends the hobgoblin's life.

Pontuus engages two of the soldiers and in a blur of motion, rains a series of blows upon his opponents and another hobgoblin falls, this time despatched by the barbarian's vicious spear.

The Warcaster dies under the crushing grip of an ice tentacle but the arcane members of the party are not yet done and Moonscale and Happy Angel marshal their powers. Moonscale blasts two soldiers with freezing bursts that slide them ever closer to the last remaining tentacle which in turn seizes a hapless hobgoblin, pulling it closer still. Haagan compounds its misery, striking him with his hammer, the divine lightning ripping through the cold damp hobgoblin. It tries to fight its way free but fares no better than the Warcaster and is crushed.

The remaining soldiers show their discipline, fighting on against the odds and Rangrim receives another heavy blow, despite his impressive armour. But it all accounts for nothing as they succumb, the last one falling to the accurate incision of Alykacha's dagger.

The last slaver has hardly hit the ground before the halfling has jumped down and is imploring the adventurers. The slavers have taken his family and friends, he managed to slip away but they trapped him in this corridor. Are the party adventurers? Heroes? Will they rescue them? He knows where the Bloodreavers base of operations resides, he just recently escaped from there!

XP
4 x Lvl 3 Hobgoblin Soldiers xp 150
Lvl 3 Hobgoblin Warcaster xp 150
TOTAL: 750


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Last edited by Jagged on Tue Aug 04, 2015 10:59 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2013 2:22 pm 
The Blood Reavers
The halfling Rendil Halfmoon implores the adventurers to rescue his friends and family from the Blood Reavers and the heroes do not even consider refusing. He leads them down dark corridors, deeper into the mountain and eventually the approach a small set of steps to a large antechamber. The halfling waits outside but beckons them forward. Alykacha stealthily creeps forward, to the east more steps leading up to some double doors, to the north a balcony overlooks the room, while rubble is strewn all across the floor. As she approaches the door the drow rogue hears voices. She doesn't understand the words but she recognises the sound of Goblin.

The adventurers decide to attempt to surprise the guards and carefully position themselves around the doors, first the two drow, then Pontuus, Moonscale and Haagan. But as Rangrim moves into position, in his plate armour, the doors are opened by a startled goblin uttering the words, "Are you back? Did you catch him?", then stares in disbelieve at the party.

Pontuus is the first to react, striking the goblin with his spear. Then in rapid succession, Happy Angel, Alykacha the Rangrim charge the poor unfortunate guard and he falls to the ground, dead. The second goblin cries out, "Krej! They've killed Krej!" and a hulking bugbear appears out of a side room. Wielding a large Morning Star, the creature lashes out at Alykacha and only her wits and cunning enable her to avoid a nasty crack to the skull.

Moonscale blasts the goblin guard and the bugbear with bolts of lightning as the various combatants jostle for position around the entrance to the side room. Hoping to place the intruders at a disadvantage, the bugbear backs away from the door, forcing the heroes to have to advance through a gauntlet of goblin axes. Ignoring the danger Moonscale leaps at the opportunity, darting into the room. A goblin tries to remove his head but the dragonborn mage deflects the axe blow with a quick wave of magic and then bathes the entire room in arcane fire. The goblins try and strike back at the spell caster, but through the smoke and the flame, they fail to find their target.

In the corridor outside the room, Haagan and Alykacha finish off the second guard, while Happy Angel hunts for the angle to fire at the bugbear. She succeeds in catching the brute with her darkfire halo and blasting one of the goblins off its feet and into the dirt.

The heroes begin to advance into the room, Haagan rides a divine storm and charges the bugbear, smashing it with his thundering warhammer. The goblins continue to attack the mage Moonscale but the paladin Rangrim is quick to his defense, intercepting their attacks and returning them with righteous anger.

All attention is directed to the most dangerous foe, and the bugbear soon finds itself flanked. It manages to connect a powerful blow with its morningstar to Haagan, but the warpriest simply shrugs it off and the bugbear soon falls to many attacks coming at it from all sides.

Thinking to intimidate the final goblin guard, Pontuus bellows at it, to drop its weapons. Perhaps not understanding the barbarian, the goblin struggles onwards, its death coming quickly at the end of a spear. At which point Pontuus realises the shouting loudly in the middle of an unknown enemy base, may not have been the best strategy.

XP
Goblin Skulcleavers 4x150
Bugbear Warrior 200
Total 800

Treasure
Belt of Sacrifice
Large key


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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 6:13 pm 
Blood Reavers Part 2
As the group of heroes look around the guard room, Moonscale spies a swarthy face looking at them from the top of the stairs. As soon as the face sees Moonscale, it vanishes out of sight. Pontuus charges up the stairs to confront the onlooker, but as he rounds the corner he is plunged into darkness.

Happy Angel and Alykacha have less problem with the darkness and also race up the stairs in pursuit. In the corridor beyond, stands a creature they recognise as a Duergar, a dark race of devil worshipping dwarves. Happy Angel fires a bolt of eldritch magic in its direction and Alykacha stabs it with her dagger. In response the Duergar sprays Pontuus with its poisoned quills and attempts an escape. Now furnished with a sun-rod, the barbarian stabs his spear into the retreating demonic dwarf.

Eager to join the combat, Moonscale rushes along the corridor after the retreating Duergar, blasting it with his acid dragon breath, only for a hobgoblin warcaster to appear in the room beyond. With a powerful jolt of arcane force, the warcaster knocks Moonscale off his feet and back in the direction he came!

Haagan and Rangrim chase up the stairs after the other adventurers, but in the narrow confines of the corridor they cannot get by, or attack their foes. Pontuus and Alykacha charge the Duergar again and dispatch it in two swift stabs. This allows Rangrim to advance into the space of the room and to challenge the hobgoblin warcaster. As he does so, a second Duergar appears, summons demonic flames and smashes the Paladin with a scorching warhammer. Moonscale counters with a burst of freezing ice that slides the Duergar away. However the warcaster remains unaffected and strikes Rangrim. Lightning crackles along the hobgoblin's quarterstaff, dazing the poor paladin.

Haagan uses his divine power to heal much of Rangrim's wounds but the diety Kord must have been frowning upon the Paladin, as he refrains from curing him of his dazed condition.

This time Pontuus and Happy Angel join forces to target a foe and rapidly bring down the warcaster with a vicious thrust of a spear and a blast of freezing ice. Alykacha and Moonscale advance towards the surviving Duergar. Alykacha engulfs it in her cloud of darkness and uses the advantage to strike a grievous blow. The devil worshipping creature retreats from the attack only to emerge from the darkness right in front of Happy Angel, who promptly skewers it with a shard of ice.

XP
Duergar 2x175
Warcaster 150
Total 450

Treasure
+2 Delvers Chainmail
One potion of healing
5 gems worth 100gp each
450gp
500sp


With all the visible enemies defeated, Happy Angel scouts further along the corridor, discovering more rooms and eventually a locked chest. The lock is trick and it takes the combined efforts of both the drow to release it, inside the find armour, gems, a potion, gold and silver and a letter from someone named "Urwol" agreeing the purchase of some slaves.

Moving on, Happy Angel opens a door to a strange chamber. Carvings of eyes cover the walls, floor and ceiling and a statue of a horrible toad-like creature can be seen to the east. Arranged around the floor can be seen a series of manacles used for chaining prisoners, but they are worryingly empty.


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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 5:56 pm 
Poor Fluffy
Happy Angel sneakily opens the door in front of her and looks out into the room beyond. The middle of the space seems to drop away to a floor ten feet below. A walk way surrounds the area and over to her left a statue of a large and ugly toad seems to watch all below. Around the room, on its walls and ceiling, strange eyes have been carved, which only adds to the unnerving effect. Slave manacles have been set into the floor, but if the adventurers are hoping to rescue the halfling's friends they will have to look elsewhere. No slaves can be seen.

From Happy Angel's position she can spy three hobgoblins, but she knows there might be more. She silently signals to the rest of the party and Alykacha is first off the mark, using her acrobatic tricks to leap down in an attempt to surprise the hobgoblin to the west. Unfortunately for Alykacha the hobgoblins have been on the alert, ever since hearing the shouts of the angry barbarian a few moments ago. As Alykacha jumps down towards her target, she see the largest wolf she has ever encountered. Bigger than a horse, with dark main, red eyes and spines along its back. The drow rouge decides now would be a good time to drop a cloud of darkness, and from within its the relative safety she stabs the hobgoblin for first blood.

Moonscale quickly follows the acrobatic drow, but doesn't make it into the room. Being a mage though, he doesn't need close proximity and blasts two hobgoblins with lightning. Haagan charges round the walkway, finds a hobgoblin skulking in a corner and smashes it with his Thunder Hammer.

At this point the hulking wolf squeezes its way up the stairs to snap at Happy Angel, who backs quickly away. Moving rapidly to defend his friends, Pontuus charges the brutish creature striking it again and again and again.

Sensing they are about to be overrun, the hobgoblin warchief barks orders to his men. They form up and launch a volley of arrows at the heroes, hitting Pontuus twice and Haagan once. But while military ranks can provide improved defenses against mundane attacks, when set in front of masters of the arcane arts they are just tempting targets. Waves of flame roll forth from Happy Angel's hand, swamping the 4 hobgoblins. Followed by Moonscale hurling a crackling orb of lightning that explodes, engulfing them in its electric embrace. At the same time Rangrim and Alykacha engage the giant wolf. While divine wrath guides Rangrim's battleaxe, Alykacha strikes from the darkness, and the creature collapses. Poor Fluffy.

With the wolf gone, the attention of the rest of the party is directed at the surviving hobgoblins. Pontuus and Haagan jumps down from the walk-way to engage their foes, the Warpriest casting a healing blessing on Pontuus seemingly in mid-air. The hobgoblins fight to the end, but the last one falls, pierced by a shard of ice and the shrill cry of "Souls for the Feywinter!"

XP
Hobgoblin Chief 200
Hobgoblin Archers 3x150
Dire Wolf 200
Total: 850


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Beer and Cards
Carrying on their search for the slaves, Happy Angel leaves the Chamber of Eyes and heads south down a narrow corridor. At a sharper turn she finds a door and the sounds of voices beyond. Using her excellent stealth skills she manages to take a look into the room without anyone noticing. A group of hobgoblins and humans appear to be sitting at tables, eating, drinking and playing cards.

The party decide to try and tempt them out of the room and into an ambush. Positioning themselves a little way back, Happy Angel sneaks forward carrying a dead hobgoblin which she places against the door in such a manner that as the door slowly opens, the body falls into the room.

One of the human bandits, jumps up and runs to the corridor. Seeing Rangrim ahead, the bandit throws a dagger at the dwarf, but it bounces harmlessly off his armour. Moonscale retaliates with a bolt of arcane force and the bandit retreats back into the refectory and the safety of his comrades.


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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2013 5:10 pm 
Refectory Stand-off
The Adventurers attempt at an ambush has fail and their enemies in the refectory have refused the bait. Clearly it will be necessary to storm the room. Alykacha advances stealthily forward and peers round corner, the tables have been overturned and the villains have taken defensive positions. The rest of the party position themselves ready for the assault and Pontuus charges.

By the door, the human bandits wait in readiness for anyone coming through. Pontuus makes it through the gauntlet with only a minor scratch and strikes one of the hobgobilns behind the table barricade. Unfortunately for the barbarian the monsters are prepared for the attack and swiftly retaliate with their flails and from the shadows at the rear of the room a volley of crossbow bolt strike, seriously hurting the warrior.

Happy Angel charges in to support Pontuus, concentrating her efforts on the hobgoblins while Alykacha rounds round the corner, and isolates one bandit and one hobgoblin in her cloud of darkness. Haagan and Moonscale follow Rangrim as he thunders into the room, striking a hobgoblin with the enchanted sword Aecris and then performs a swift lay on hands on Pontuus. Haagan and Moonscale both summon their differing forms of lightning down upon the hobgoblin warriors and once the Warpriest finishes casting a healing word on Pontuus, the barbarian is back to fight form.

Alykacha goes after the goblin at the rear, back-flipping in between them, she drops her second cloud (through the use of her Ruby Medallion of Lolth) and plunges the snipers into total darkness.

At the other end of the room, the military precision of the hobgoblin warriors combined with their impressive armour, enables the creatures to hold their own against the superior numbers of the adventurers. But eventually the first hobgoblin falls and their formation crumbles. The rest of the warriors succumbing shortly after.

Alykacha has dispatched the first of the goblin sharpshooters but the second sniper has fled. She gives chase but loses sight of it as it runs round a corner. Racing into the store room where she believes the goblin to be hiding Alykacha finds the room empty. She begins a search and eventually discovers a hidden door and at the end of a short corridor, a trap door in the ceiling leads back to Chamber of Eyes. The missing goblin is spotted racing for the exit, so the two drow and moonscale give chase, while the rest of the party charge round the other way. Pontuus makes it to the chamber's entrance first, catching the sniper in a pincer movement. The unfortunate goblin dies, caught on a spear from one direction and an ice shard from another.

XP
Hobgoblin Solders 3x150
Goblin Sharpshooters 2x125
Human Bandits 2x125
Total 950

Treasure
+1 lifedrinker Scimitar
potion of healing
gems 3x100gp
72 gp


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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 9:53 am 
One of my players wrote up the next encounter, which was mainly non-combat.

Arriving at the Seven Pillar Hall, just missing the Jack White concert, we delivered the ‘package’ to the ogre who was causing Bairwin all the problems. It turns out he is a dagger enthusiast, and the package contained a dagger.

Finding little to go on, and avoiding the obvious play on words, we realised that there had been Deurgar, deep dwarves, involved in the slaving operation and, by, well, exasperating the GM to the point where he was practically flinging clues at us, we visited the dwarves of the Deepgem mining Company who LOATHE Deurgar.

Fortunately that particular organisation is run by a cleric of Moradin and, having a paladin of Moradin and a just cause, and a really jammy Diplomacy roll, we persuaded Olphand Deepgem, the aforementioned cleric, to badmouth the Deurgar; they use slaves, apparently. He provided us with a map of a mineshaft recently abandoned by the Deurgar, and, well, any clue in a storm, or something like that.

After a pleasant night’s rest, well, a pleasant night for Pontuus and snore enthusiasts, we set off in search of slavers, slaves and, well, bloodshed. What we found was auto erotic asphyxiation, only someone else was doing it and we didn’t enjoy it. Perhaps it was inevitable, going into battle dressed as Japanese schoolgirls, that tentacles would make their appearance sooner rather than later, so that is why we did not dress as Japanese schoolgirls. Well, most of us didn’t. You know who you are…

Nasty beasts called chokers, who skitter along the ceiling and wrap their long, flexible arms around you in a manner that can only be described as, “too clingy”, backed up by a ghoul (for some reason) and a huge mass of tentacles that lived in a well. Naturally the two drow hotties were that target of much tentacle action.


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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 3:59 pm 
Playing catch-up with my write-ups ;)

The Lost Mine
Ulthand Deepgem, a Moradin cleric and former adventurer that now runs the Deepgem Company, tells the adventurers that the Duergar are known to have bastion, deep in the lower levels of the mountain. The bastion is well defended and you would need a formidable army to storm the front gate. However, the ever vigilant dwarves, have noticed that the Duergar deliver the results of their mining, directly from their mines, to the Bastion, via a secret back door. The mines are well guarded, but the dwarves know of one they have recently abandoned. Perhaps the party can find the secret back door, if they investigate the lost mine? The only question is who or what drove the Duergar away?

Following a night's rest, the party head out to abandoned mine. Eventually they approach a large square chamber. Several columns rise 15ft to the ceiling and onto each, has been carved the face of a leering and fanged minotaur. To the south east corner of the room, sits a well, and two corridors, one leading south, the other leading east.

As the party enters the room, one of the carved faces begins to speak, "Greetings, seekers of Baphomet's boundless glory. Those who prove unworthy of his attention shall be claimed forever as his slaves. Those who prove worthy shall be granted power beyond mortal reckoning."

Happy Angel advances into the room but fails to notice the strange creatures clinging to the dark corners of the ceiling. From the rear of the room, a ghoul rushes towards her. But before the undead abomination can strike, long arms reach down from above, snatch up the drow and begin strangling her. Remembering the times she had been imprisoned in the past, Happy Angel struggled against her captor, but in vain. Alykacha rushes forward to help her compatriot and stabs at the Choker's most vulnerable point, but the fast reacting creature simple uses Happy Angel to block the attack. The second Choker makes to lift Alykacha off the floor, but she leaps aside at the last moment.

Rangrim attempts to free Happy Angel and successfully strikes the Choker with the magic sword Aecris and calls on divine aid to help the drow Hexblade resist its strangling attack. But even with this assistance she cannot escape.

Pontuus charges forward and engages the ghoul. The creature is quick and only by his grim focus and unbridled energy does the barbarian strike home. Determined to finish his undead prey, he pushes himself beyond his normal limits, unleashing his full wrath. As the ghoul staggers under the onslaught, Pontuus (action point) becomes a blur of motion, raining a series of blows upon the unnatural abomination and the ghoul collapses in a heap of decaying flesh.

As the adventurers dare to hope things might be going their way, a mass of sprawling tentacles erupt out of the floor, and flail away, grasping for any target. One strike Alykacha and quickly wraps itself around her. Moonscale reaches forward and a fierce blast of flame erupts from his hands and scorching the tentacle mass (known as a Phalagar) and one of the chokers, he immediately follows it with his acid dragon breath, bathing them in a second burning blast.

By now Happy Angel is beginning to weaken under the Choker's grip but Haagan whisper a brief prayer and divine light washes over her, mending her wounds. Strength restored, she escapes from the creature's grasp. Her pent-up anger, erupting forth with the blasting fires of Hell itself, that sweep over the Choker and the tentacle mass. Her fury unsatiated, Happy Angel attacks again (action point), this time obliterating the Choker with a cloak of twisting and piercing ice.

Alykacha flips her way free of the tentacle mass and its many grasping tendrils, and then drops her cloud of darkness round the last surviving Choker. With the advantage firmly in her favour, she stabs the creature in its most vulnerable point and follows it with a second strike, in swift succession (action point) and the creature collapses dead.

The party close in on the tentacle mass, but it explodes in a flurry of attacks as it furiously whips in all directions. Of those in the immediate surroundings, only Pontuus escapes. Moonscale conjures a giant floating hand made of chiseled ice that clutches at the tentacles while Haagan peppers it with his crossbow and heals Happy Angel for a second time. Circling the strange creature, the adventurers pound it with their most reliable attacks until Rangrim criticals it and Haagan delivers the death blow as thunder and lightning explode from his Thundering Hammer.

XP
Lvl 4 Cavern Chokers 2 x 175
Lvl 5 Ghoul xp 200
Lvl 6 Phalagar xp 500
TOTAL: 1050


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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Sun Jun 09, 2013 3:40 pm 
Bugbear Den
After recovering from the Chokers and the Phalagar, the group of adventurers approach the closed doors at the end of the eastern passage. Exhibiting her incredible stealth skills, Happy Angel opens the doors and advances into the darkness. The room beyond is full of smoke from a recently doused fire and the pungent aroma of bodies in an enclosed environment. The Drow's vision reveals a roughly hewn cave, with supporting columns round the periphery. In the centre, furs from unknown animals make a bedding area round a large, still glowing pot. Happy Angel has an idea what may be in the pot, and its not good.

Unfortunately for the rogue, her expert stealth skills do not extend to her comrades and if the occupants of the shadows were not aware of her approach, the clanking warpriest leaves it in no doubt that "someone" is coming. Happy Angel spots a lurking form across the other side of the cave, and blasts it with a shard of shimmering force. Then the hulking forms of two Bugbears, dart swiftly out of the dark, striking at her with large two-handed swords. Alykacha dodges and weaves through the cave, plunging her magical dagger into one of the shaggy humanoids which promptly crumples to the floor.

Believing he can now identify the weaker Bugbears, Moonscale launches a Magic Missile into the darkness. No amount of cover prevents the glowing blue bolt from striking its target and another Bugbear dies. However the creatures have been patiently waiting for adventures to move within range and choose this moment to let fly with hand-axes. Rangrim, Pontuus and Haagan, all taking hits. Although the Bugbears briefly appear to throw their weapons, they immediately retreat to the shadows and vanish.

Pootuus jabs his spear into the darkness where a Bugbear once stood, the spear-blade sinks into a target that howls in pain. Happy Angel fires a second Eldritch bolt at her original target, the bolt flies wide until the power of her wand, twists the strands of fate and turns the miss into a hit. All the while Moonscale launches Magic Missiles into the shadows, thinning away the weaker targets.

Rangrim and Haagan engage targets lurking to the sides, but the dwarf misses his enemy in the shadows. The Warpriest switches weapons and has better luck finding his targets, the cover given by the darkness providing no protection from Haagan's crossbow bolts. Bugbears charge Moonscale and Alykacha, slicing them both with greatswords while more hand-axes strike Pontuus and Haagan. The adventures retaliate, all finding their targets. Happy Angel fatally skewering her target on a spear of ice while Rangrim's divine fury obliterates the Bugbear that dared to strike the Drow Rogue.

Their numbers greatly thinned, a greatsword-wielding Bubear smashes at the Mage, the heavy blade rebounding off a hastily cast shielding-spell. Alykacha and Happy Angel close in on the last enemy but its the Dwarf Rangrim who gets the killing blow, felling the creature with his Great-axe.

Searching the cave, the party find the valued possessions of less fortunate adventurers who ended up in the Bugbears' pot. While over to the south east, sits patiently waiting, three mine-carts and a rail track the hopefully leads to the rear entrance to the Duergar Bastion!

XP
4 x Lvl 5 Bugbear Backstabber 4x200xp
4 x Lvl 5 Bugbear Bushwhacker 4x50xp
Total: 1000xp

Treasure
460gp
gems 4x100gp
Dwarven sculpture 250gp
+2 Axe of Sundering
1 memory crystal - a rare magical ingredient used in the creation of "Armour of Exploits" or "Thought-Eater Armour"


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Last edited by Jagged on Sun Jun 09, 2013 3:45 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Sun Jun 09, 2013 3:43 pm 
Mine Cart Race
My next session was based upon an idea from the "Some Assembly Required" adventure in Dungeon Magazine 208, which featured a Indian Jones style race down an impossible mine cart track. I used slightly different rules than those from the magazine:
  • The carts were all running at an effective move speed of 10. Each player had an extra move option of either speeding up the cart by 1, or slowing it down by 1.
  • The carts provide partial cover to everyone or complete cover should they decide to duck down.
  • At initiative point 10, a Switch lever whizzes past and these can be used to change track, one up or one down. You can change your own cart or any ahead of you by targeting the switch before 10 or change the track for any cart behind you by targeting it after 10. The switch can be targeted by melee or ranged attacks, but it has an effective AC of 20.
  • If two or more parallel carts attempt to move onto the same track, the carts would clang together but remain on the same track. The occupants of each cart however, would be Dazed (save ends). Carts on the same track can bump into each other, without incident. I didn't tell my players this, although they soon discovered it.
  • Should a character wish to jump forward, in the same direction as the carts are travelling, they would receive -1 to their jump distance. Should a character wish to jump backwards, in the opposite direction as the carts are travelling, they would receive +1 to their jump distance.

During the previous session, my players decided to spread themselves across three carts, two PCs in each cart. My NPCs would be packed four to a cart, which would give them a slight speed advantage. I set the encounter up as a long one, with two sets of eight enemies. These would come in two waves of two carts. Each cart contained three Duergar Guards and one Duergar Theurge. The guards were armed with Crossbow and Warhammer. The theurges with Hellbot, Vile Fumes, Wave of Despair and Brimstone Hail.

This turned into a tough encounter for my players, who generally get things far too easy! I am a softie-DM. And we managed to eat through a significant number of surges. One of my players used Tentacles of Cryonax on the rail tracks in front of an enemy cart. I decided that the cart would smash through the tentacles but I did apply damage to the Deurgar in the front of the cart, and also applied Dazes to everyone in the cart (I thought that was very generous). The Mage also tried to use Freezing Burst to dump the Duergar out of the carts, but I ruled that impossible, due to the sides of the carts being a safe height. Sliding movement is described as purely 2D in the rules, so I thought that reasonable. Plus allowing a level 1 At-Will the ability to remove but to 4 enemies from the combat, would utterly defeat the fun of it :)

Image


To manage the movement of the carts and the characters in the carts I created simple images for the carts, which I dropped on the Object layer. I then gave these objects simple macros to move forward and backwards and to jump between tracks. The macros would move the cart and any tokens in the 4 valid squares or the cart. I did wonder if this might cause some problems for some of my friends on their sometimes-laggy connections, but it worked surprisingly well.

I can't do a detailed write up of the actual encounter, since it was far too chaotic and long. But it earned them a lot of XP:
4 x Lvl 5 Duergar Theurge xp 200
12 x Lvl 4 Duergar Guards xp 175
TOTAL: 2100


Cart A.rptok [17.77 KiB]
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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Sun Jun 16, 2013 4:49 pm 
Duergar Bastion - Mine Cart Entrance
With the Duergar from the mine carts dead, the adventurers sit down and catch their breath. Gradually the steepness of the track begins to level and the carts start to slow. The three tracks merge into one and the walls of the tunnel get closer and closer until there is barely room for the carts.

As inertia wins, the carts reach the end of the track, gently bumping into each other as the come to a halt. At the back of the train, the six adventurers crouch in hiding, while the leading carts roll into an open room. Standing round the room are more Duergar miners and guards. Surprised by the unexpected arrival of so many carts, they peer at the contents. Where there should have been ore, the startled miners only see dead bodies and before they can shout to the guards, Alykacha and Happy Angel let loose with arrows and spells! They party clamber out of the train and set upon the hapless Duergar. Within a few short moments the guards and miners have been dispatched and the adventurers can take in their surroundings. This is clearly where the Duergar process the raw material from their mines, but there is no sign of any slaves at work. The adjacent rooms reveal nothing just clean but bare living quarters. However the most eastern door opens onto a balcony bathed in an eerie red glow. From their position of relative safety, they see a bridge crossing a stream of molten larva 30ft below. The bridge criss-crosses the hellish river, leading to two further balconies.

Treasure
180sp
300gp worth of gems

XP
6 x Duergar Miner lvl 5 minion xp 50
2 x Duergar Guard lvl 4 Soldier xp 175
TOTAL: 650


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 Post subject: Re: The Dragon of Thunderspire Mountain - Rumbles Slim Frame
PostPosted: Wed Jul 03, 2013 6:08 pm 
I am very behind in my write-ups :cry:

The Hall of Champions
Moving as silently as they can with so many clumsy people in plate and scale, the party quickly cross the bridge. Pausing only to take the briefest look at the river of lava flowing slowly beneath them. Once on the other side they face a carved entrance and large double doors. Deciding all is quiet, the two Drow open the doors and move in. Another set of double doors is immediately in front of them while to the left and to the right, corridors lead off into dim shadow. Following her obsessive desire to always turn left, Happy Angel leads the party left and north into a warm kitchen. The place is empty of Duergar, but someone must be nearby, since roasting over the large cooking fire are two boars on metal spits. The cook (whoever it may be) has some talent and this looks and smells far more enticing than the last home cooked meal the adventurers discovered.

Beyond the kitchen are storage rooms, crates of provisions and doors leading south. Happy Angel crouches by the door and listens for signs of their Duergar prey, she hears murmured conversation and occasional laughter so the party gather and prepare to launch an attack. Happy Angel is naturally first through the door, and finds herself in a large hall with several Duergar sitting round tables, eating and drinking. At the head of the hall, sits a large Duergar in fine armour and armed to the bristles. Deciding this "Champion" must be the most dangerous target, Happy Angel unleashes her Darkfire, and Rundarr finds himself surrounded by a flickering halo of purple light. She quickly follows with a piercing shard of ice that freezes his body and blinds his mind. Poor Rundarr is barely getting to his feet as Pontuus charges towards him in a blur of motion, raining a series of blows upon his head and he staggers back dazed.

The Duergar's day does not get any better as Moonscale enters the hall and bathes it in fire. At first the Duergar laugh, believing their demonic nature means they have little to fear from fire. But as the flame erupts from Moonscale's hands, they soon discover that the arcane fire of a warrior mage burns straight through their resistances. As does acid, as the Dragonborn follows up his spell with his breath-weapon, searing those Duergar closest to him.

The Warpriest Haagan enters the other side of the room, immediate engaging a group of Duergar guards and cripples one with a crushing blow of his Thundering Hammer. While the Paladin Rangrim, engages the dazed Duergar Champion, preventing Rundarr from facing anyone but him.

The Duergar slowly begin to react and beard quills fly everywhere, but most fail to find their target. The Duergar that survived Moonscale's onslaught, round on him, but their quills and hammers bounce harmlessly off the mage's shielding spell. Rundarr begins to swell to an enormous size, pushing Rangrim and Happy Angel backwards. He swings his battleaxe in a large arc that encompasses the both of them, but the heroes dodge the deadly blow. Pontuus seizes his chance and strikes at Rundarr over Rangrim's shoulder, as his spear bites home the barbarian pushing himself beyond his normal limits, unleashing his full wrath. Moonscale arcs lightning across the hall, striking guards at one end and Rundarr at the other. Rangrim unleashes a mighty blow at the now monstrously sized Duergar Champion, who staggers to one knee. At which point Alykacha (seemingly missing from combat up until now) appears and stabs Rundarr in the back. The champion crashes to the ground dead, while Alykacha envelops a Duergar scout in a cloud of darkness. Hidden from view of the rest of the combatants the scout and the rogue hunt each other in the unnatural shadow, but when the cloud disappears only Alykacha remains.

Their leader gone, the surviving Duergar fight on with desperate determination. But the divine storm unleashed from Haagan's holy weapon slams the demonic dwarves to the ground while ushering the rest of the party into advantageous positions and the fight is short lived.

Treasure: Dwarven Greaves

XP
Rundarr, Duergar Champion lvl 6 Elite Brute xp 500
2 x Duergar Guard lvl 4 Soldier xp 175
2 x Duergar Scout lvl 4 Soldier xp 175
2 x Duergar Miner lvl 5 minion xp 50
TOTAL: 1300


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