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Dungeons Unleashed: Crimson Shield Campaign

I recently started a playtest campaign of Dungeons Unleashed, a hack of the Simple Superheroes engine for fantasy gaming.

I will start posting up session summaries and other details here.

Dungeons Unleashed Dark Age of Darsivia campaign

Players were given three options on what theme the campaign would take: The Beastmen of Kadesh, Silver Lanterns or Crimson Shield Mercenary Company.

They chose the Crimson Shield.

Players
Azim, skeleton knight due to a cursed suit of armour (Player Aneesh) rank corporal
Osprax, light/dark mage and friend of birds, half-elf (player Ben) rank specialist
Robert the Healer, priest of Elnadar (player David) rank specialist

Crimson Shield members
Commander Angranth
Corporal Lenox
Jonah brave trooper with Azim, fights side by side
Jacob trooper with Azim. Complains, always does the thing so he doesn’t fight.
Sergeant?

Local force escorting caravan is about 20 troopers + ranked members. (2 lost during predawn attack)
The Crimson shield is a significantly larger mercenary company, currently taking a number of smaller jobs while looking for more lucrative employment.

Currently escorting a (mainly) halfling caravan along the fey road (caravan leader - Phillips). Between the gnomish city of Tinkerton and the elven border city.

The session started with a disagreement at a cross-road on which way to go to the eleven border city, Osprax consulted the birds who eventually told him to head right.
While they waited Azim’s section scouted, and were attacked by a needleman. It revealed the Shroom sent it before being slain. It had poisonous fungus growing on it.
Another trooper threw a javelin at a figure, but further scouting revealed nothing.

The caravan traveled on and camped overnight. On the predawn watch, raucous cries of starlings alerted the group to a halfling being grabbed at the latrine by a podman. Azim and Robert stopped them, and Osprax discovered more hiding in wait. Birds were called to attack and the Crimson Shield formed up and smashed the 5 podmen, losing 2 men in the assault.

Robert managed to convince the last surviving podman to lead them home. 2 halflings were discovered missing.

Spot 3 podmen carrying 2 halflings and a goblin below in a cavern at the base of a waterfall. The podman leading them and Robert take a tumble off the cliff into the pool below.
Osprax slows them by blinding them.
They catch up and defeat them, just as Sargath the black dragon reveals himself. He is there to stop trespassers, unless perhaps they offer him wealth.
Osprax fumbles with negotiating as Robert jumps across the stream and appoaches from another direction. After a brief warning he attacks the dragon - with cancer.
The dragon breathes on Robert, who survives relatively unscathed, and Osprax blinds with a flash of light, as Azim rushes to help.

The battle ends after with Sargath fleeing in flight (after the blindness spell wore off), swearing vengeance and Osprax magically summoning a swarm of birds to attack the beast – he rolled double twelves. The dragon eye is pecked out, he slams into the wall and falls to the pool below, dead.

The heroes find a small but heavy chest, and take it and the dragons body with them.

Comments

  • A dragon's defeat:
    Honestly I was mostly thinking of the dragon encounter as a roleplaying one. But player perspective often surprises you.
    I didn't have stats for a young dragon handy, but I had made one before, so I just went with: 4Lp 3Mp, 3-claw&bite [O], 3-dragon magic (includes breath weapon) [F*], 3-dragon scales [D], 3-magic defense [D], 2-flight [F]

    Throughout the fight the dragon got relatively poor rolls, but the major hero advantage was the action economy, and Osprax blinding the dragon on his first action. Keep in mind that the three heroes had only rank 2 talents and the dragon was pretty much always rolling three dice.

    Round 1 - Robert does 1 "cancer" damage, dragon breathes poison acid on Robert - no damage, Osprax blinds dragon for 2 rounds*, Azim rushes over missing with a thrown axe (1 die).
    *Osprax got two successes, which I ruled lasted for the next two rounds (2-light vs 3-magic defense).

    Round 2 - Sargath (dragon) casting spell*, Robert does 1 damage, Azim does 1 damage, dragon spell spoiled -- breathes acid cloud at "noise"* hits Azim for 1, Osprax reblinds dragon for 1 round (no real effect)

    Spell spoiled -- I'm not sure about this ruling, I do like the idea of deciding you are going to cast a spell and it being spoiled if you get hit. When those spells get declared, and when they go off needs some more thought.
    I ruled that even blinded a dragon is going to hit something with it's breath weapon. Randomized the breath weapon targeting as 1-4 Azim, 5-8 Robert, 9-12 Both (Osprax was across a stream and not in melee.) Azim being a skeleton had a solid talent called "no vitals" that he could roll in defense.

    Round 3 - Robert misses?, dragon breathes acid and hits Azim for 2, Azim hits the dragon, Osprax ?

    My recollection is a little fuzzier here, however things got bad fast. Robert got to -1. The blindness wore off but the dragon was at -2, he took off, Robert threw a weapon and missed, and Osprax "summoned all the bird's in the world" to stop and attack the dragon. He rolled two 12s. The dragon rolled one 11.

    So a flock of Avians decended and peck out it's eye, causing it to slam into a wall and tumble to the pool below.


    Reflection:
    The dice weren't in the dragon's favour, but the big thing was it never got to attack multiple opponents with it's breath weapon. This action economy change was due mostly to the blindness.
    I ruled against the dragon for dismissing the blindness spell (it probably would have been a "tremorsense" spell rather than just breaking the blindness) because he got hit. Something I wasn't really making the players worry about.
    I did rule in his favour when he hit -2. Technically this means he should have been limited to his rank 3 talents to and only able to role 1 die (negative lifepoints subtract from dice your talents.)
    Looking back this could have been a good opportunity to have the dragon surrender, and RP from there.

    But hey, I've only had one other game where a dragon was defeated, and this is the first ever where one was killed -- and in a very, very dramatic fashion. So that is a win.
  • edited January 7
    Session 2: The Crimson Shield Dark Age of Darsivia Campaign

    The Crimson Shield continues to escort the halfling caravan up the Fey Road.

    We had mostly new players.

    Azim - Skeleton Knight returns. (Played by Aneesh)
    Greeneye - The Ranger, who wishes to return peace to the forest of his youth (played by Jeff)
    Mikael - conjurer, gained powers after nearly dying, joined Crimson Shield because he didn't feel safe around normal people. (played by Mike)
    Kazura - Paladin of Sarissa. Former Squire of the knights of the Godpack - found their methods questionable. (Pravreen)
    Bulch - thief/assassin type. Half-elf + half-orc. Some talk of a connection to a noble family.

    Summary:
    Opened dragon's chest: cloth, circlet with opal (magical protection), sipstrassi (concentrated mana), coin.
    Travelled on, loading dragon's body into one of the wagons.

    At camp that night, the group followed a trail of suspiciously large mushrooms that grew larger and larger, until reaching a pool. They hacked at some and Greeneye determined that they should be edible, and tasted quite good. Fought off a "squelch mound," which retreated into a pool. During the fight Kazura was dragged inside the mound, but his last second aura of flames prayer, and it's damage convinced it to regurgitate him and retreat into the pool.
    A giant slug that Mikael had summoned disappeared when it touched the water. The mercenaries figured out that the water had some sort of magical properties, and collected some to take with them.

    The next day they continued on and met a leprechaun who asked for some pipeweed in exchange for some good luck. He gave them a rabbits foot, and gave Bulch (half-orc and half-elf) bad luck when he mispronounced his name. One of the halflings named Jerry who they saved from the dragon, helped them arrange the pipeweed.
    Arrived at Windemere at sunset (thanks to the good luck) and saw a large group of Beastmen - mostly orcs of the empty eye clan and a handful of wolfmen completing the salt ceremony before leaving the gnomish village.

    Greeneye talked to a Wolfman, and then Bulch talked with an orc named Cargor of the Empty Eye clan. They had been driven from their home 2 winters ago and a mushroom, they said they traded with Windemere and are heading South to new land.

    The Gnomes of Windemere offered to make some gear from the dragons body for the Crimson Shield. Windemere is surrounded by obelisks that seem to protect it somehow. The carts are left there and all goods loaded onto donkeys and mules.
    Bulch claimed dragons heart at gnomish village of Windemere. Flogged for wearing it openly like a barbarian beastman and being insubordinate to commander Angranth.
    The dragon heart beat when he was flogged, and when he walked between the obelisks surrounding Windemere.

    Crossroads, used magic water?
    No, orcs went "south"

    Copper Trees gate. Osprax had to head back to Windemere, a mark on his hand started glowing.

    Met a Giant who was scared of magic. Barley managed to avoid a serious altercation.

    Caravan suddenly found themselves desperately thirsty. Some clever play got them through the area and removed the effect (some use of the anti-magic water was used).

    Found themselves at a cottage-temple-garden-orphanage, and an ancient bridge over a mist filled canyon.
    Priest of Draka (Oliver) at the bridge of Death. The PC's solved a riddle to pay for passage and not be attacked by the undead guardians of the bridge.
    Voice spoke to Azim (who said it made the armour) while crossing and gave a small obsidian disk, .

    Unfortunately, Mikael decided to teleport the payment back to himself after they had crossed. He tried to delay the undead by creating a wall, and was slain.

    The heroes and the caravan is fleeing and hoping that the undead do not continue the pursuit.

    Reflection
    Not much combat this session, so not much to comment on there. Players where good at finding alternate ways around things. There was some fine negotiation with the beastmen which lowered the likelihood of them attacking, and they manage to dissuade the Giant from continuing to attack.
    I do think I need to be a little more careful with how I handle spells, so they don't overshadow the other characters. One key I think is that if a caster wants the effect to persist for the scene (be reusable after the first casting) it should take their whole action just to activate the spell.
  • Session 3: Ieosys FenFir

    A short session with character creation and a bit of solo play.

    Ieosys FenFir, elven Acolyte of Chaos (played by Kelley)

    “Flashback”
    While in the gnomish town of Tinkerton, Ieosys heard about a small shrine to Donobrem god of chaos in the area. He hired a gnomish guide named, Phelleap to take him there.

    Unfortunately, a trio of Knucklegrinder goblins were visiting the shrine as they arrived and a skirmish ensued. Fortunately, Ieosys chaos bolt and mind trick spells put an end to hostilities before anyone was killed. The goblins requested the acolytes blessings, and while performing the ritual Ieosys Fenfir discovered a Silver Pendant of Chaos in the altar.

    A voice urged him to follow the red. Upon returning to Tinkerton he discovered the Crimson Shield mercenary company, escorting a halfling caravan up the fey road to elven lands, and immediately decided to join the mercenary company.
  • edited March 22
    Session 4: The Battle of the Ridge and The Cursed Lady

    Our first session over Discord. We had two players brave this test of unfamiliar technology.

    Azim, skeleton knight due to a cursed suit of armour (Player Aneesh) rank corporal
    Robert the Healer, priest of Elnadar (player David) rank specialist

    The Battle of Sandstone Ridge
    The Crimson Shield and the halfling caravan swiftly retreat from the bridge. However, despite a brief pause, it is clear that the undead of the bridge have sent a pursuit force. After several hours of forced march, Commander Angranth abandon’s any hope of outdistancing the tireless undead. Finding a defensible ridge a short distance off the path, the Crimson Shield form up in a battle line.

    Robert blesses the heavy infantry, insuring that they will not be subject to any fear effects. Halfling slingers of the caravan attempt to disrupt the advancing undead, but are ineffectual and quickly break in fear of the advancing force.

    Azim commands the reserve skirmishers, and splits his force to match the enemy encirclement. While the Crimson Shield outnumbers the undead on all fronts, there ability to shrug off blow after blow more than evens the odds.

    Against the odds, the Crimson Shield holds, and holds some more. The Skirmisher’s on the left, lead by Jonah, are the first to break and run after a third of their number are cut down. However, the halfling slingers rally, and join the fray, preventing the slaughter of the caravan.

    On the right, Azim’s bravery encourages the men. While they are pushed back and one man is cut down beside him, eventually the battle turns in his favour. He and his men dismember one after another of undead warriors. He claims a black obsidian chip from the forehead of one of the warriors.

    At the heart of the battle Robert confronts the undead commander. They rain holy and unholy energies down upon one another. Around them the line pushes back and forth, favouring one side and then the other. Eventually, the battle starts to turn against the undead, the superior numbers of Crimson Shield exposing both flanks to additional spears and swords. The undead commander, injured and seeing the tide of battle turning, knocks Robert prone, creating an opening for the undead force to retreat. They do so, silently and in good order.

    To a man the Crimson Shield let’s them flee unmolested. A ragged cheer goes up, tempered with the hope that they will not have to fight such a chilling foe again.

    Caravan leader Phillips, believes that they have succesfully fended off half of the legendary Thirty of Terrathor bridge.

    The Twisting Path of the Serpent
    Thankfully the undead do not return that night, or the next day. The Crimson Shield buries it’s 5 dead and one halfling slinger. They travel on uneventfully until midafternoon. Ahead is a meadow where the path splits into three paths, one lined with white stones, one lined with black stones, and a third path lined with red stones. They twist, meander and intersect one another. In the sky, they see a Sky Serpent flying along the paths. It heads in their direction.

    Gareth the Sky serpent is looking for Elborath the giant. He says the giant has something of his.

    The Woman and the Burnt out Cottage
    As dusk approach the caravan approached a burnt out cottage. (The Sky serpent informed them that if they are heading to elven lands, they should head left after the burnt out cottage.) Robert and Azim decided to scout it before setting camp.

    A strange woman was there, milking a cow. Azim and the woman quickly got into an argument, and it rapidly became clear that something was amiss. She saw him as a normal human, and couldn’t hold his coin, while she could throw a rock right through him. She saw Robert as a man swathed in light. Robert prayed to bring her more in alignment with life, and break any ensorcellement on the place. Immediately the placid cow was revealed as some form of stinking and tentacled catoblepas. Fortunately, Azim was the one charged by the beast, and was mostly immune to it’s unnatural energies.

    The beast was slain. Robert was able to perform a ritual to break the curse on the woman. Who revealed she had been cursed by an ancient which (her husband’s grandmother) named Enclavada.

    The caravan made camp.






  • Session 5:
    Our second session over discord. We had four players.

    Azim, skeleton knight due to a cursed suit of armour (Player Aneesh) rank corporal
    Robert the Healer, priest of Elnadar (player David) rank specialist
    Kazura - Paladin of Sarissa. Former Squire of the knights of the Godpack - found their methods questionable. (Pravreen) rank specialist
    Bulch - thief/assassin type. Half-elf + half-orc, can turn invisible. (played by Eric) rank scout

    Azim gains a level and improves his stunt points, and gains a 2-Charismatic Leadership [functional] talent.
    Bulch gains a level and improves his life points, and improves his 2-Acrobatics [functional] to rank 3.
    Kuzura gains a level and improves his life points, and improves his 2-Aura of Flames [defensive] to rank 3.

    A Wolf Among Dogs
    Bulch notices a that a third dog has joined the caravan. It looks almost identical to the two lab-like dogs the halfling Gregory.
    After a series of hijinks, Bulch, Azim and Kazura manage to capture the third beast. Eventually it transforms into a Wolfman name Albrech of the Open Eye clan. They got lost on the Feyroad, and thought the Crimson Shield was chasing them.
    After some negotiation, Albrech leaves, and some trading of goods occurs the next day. Both groups part company. After some words of warning about Bulch’s dragon heart.

    The Brook of Dreams and Spider lair
    Short version – strange brook causes some of the caravan to wander off and fall down a spider pit due to illusions. A battle ensues (Azim and Bulch were unaffected and follow.)
    The Robert the Healer and Kazura rescue the trap soldiers and mule with some clever spell work. Robert heals the mule and gives it goat like agility to escape the pit.

    The Return
    They march for hours to try and catch up with the rest of the caravan. It isBulch who realizes that they need to stop relying on their eyes, and as Albrech said – they need to follow their noses.
  • edited April 8
    Session 6: The Elven City of Onhalon

    Leosys FenFir, elven Acolyte of Chaos (played by Kelley) rank specialist
    Robert the Healer, priest of Elnadar (player David) rank specialist
    Bulch - thief/assassin type. Half-elf + half-orc, can turn invisible. (played by Eric) rank scout

    Robert gains a level but is undecided on his improvements.

    Mind Battle
    As the two separated groups of the Crimson Shield come, together confusion ensues as illusions clash with reality. Commander Angranth demands that Leosys FenFir does something. Praying to Donobrem to dispel the mental confusion, the acolyte of chaos quickly finds himself in mental battle with some sort of spirit. Bulch slips into invisibility and can see an apparition with it’s claws in Leosys head. Leosys is wracked with burning pain. He gambles and uses Chaos bolt on the spirit, to resounding success - he is able to disperse this and all the other spirits and illusions in short order.

    Knotwood and Entering the Elven Border City of Onhalon
    A treant named Knotwood interviews each member of the caravan before they can enter Onhalon. He warns them to keep to the visitor section of the city unless accompanied by a local guide. Leosys being a pureblood elf is given free reign, and told about the current competition and selection to be elected prince of Onhalon. Robert makes Knotwood laugh, long, and hard.
    After some initial revels on arriving in Onhalon, the characters pursue different objectives while in the city.

    Robert’s Relaxation and Reconnaissance
    Robert headed to elven glade dedicated to Elnadar. Many priest and worships move about. He sat down with the chief priest Aikaterine and enjoyed tea and theological discussions. The two discussed the state of the church in both elven and human lands. Robert also learned that the hobgoblin nation of Krangi is certainly mobilizing for war. Aikaterine believes that they will attack either the human Barony of Marbach to the south, or the County of Ebilith to the north.
    Robert informed Commander Angranth of this potential opportunity for the Crimson Shield.

    Bulch: blood, blades and bones
    Bulch visited the elven bonemaster Lysander. Lysander taught him about some of the properties of the dragonheart of Sargath. He helped him with some initial attunement to the heart. Lysander alse agreed to fashion a dagger from the spider-fang he collected, but only if he can pay more silver than he had.
    Bulch agrees, and decides to take on an assasination mission for an elf named “Eratus.” The job is to assassinate a councillor named Dorian. He climbe to the top of Dorian’s tower, avoided detection by his children, and slit the councillor’s throat. He escaped despite briefly confronting a spellcaster who attempted to foil his invisibility as he left the tower. He collects his payment and pays for his new spiderfang dagger.
    The population of Onhalon, seems more suspicious of the caravan over the next few days . . .

    Leosys: Prince and the Cathedral of Fallen Stars
    Leosys decided to enter the competition to become Prince of Onhalon. He completed the test of archery, the test of vigor (on the second attempt - succeeding in climbing the great oak Helix), and the test of stillness (meditating for many hours more than necessary thanks to using a “mind trick” prayer on himself, and a complacent official). He broke bread and played dice with an elf named Nikostatos who had awoken him from his trance.
    Unfortunately, Leosys is not chosen at random to be Prince. But he did catch the eye of the new Prince Pelopidas, who asked him to help him find and reclaim the buried city of Terrathor. Pelopidas promised him a lordship should those lands be reclaimed.
    Leosys pays his respects to the Catherdral of Fallen Stars, the pre-eminent temple to Donobrem in the region.
  • Crimson Shield Session 7: The Free Cities and Apraxis the Lizard-man Shaman

    Leosys FenFir, elven Acolyte of Chaos (played by Kelley) rank specialist
    Bulch - thief/assassin type. Half-elf + half-orc, can turn invisible. (played by Eric) rank scout
    Azim - skeleton knight due to a cursed suit of armour (played by Aneesh)
    now rank corporal first class (master corporal)
    Kazura - Paladin of Sarissa. Former Squire of the knights of the Godpack - found their methods questionable. (played by Pravreen) rank specialist

    The Uneventful Journey and Windemere
    While some strange sights are seen on their journey back from the elven city of Onhalon along the fey road, little occurred to disrupt the journey. They stopped midway at Windermere to collect the caravan's wagons, and the rest of the guards and caravaneers. Azim collected his dragonscale shield from a gnomish artisan named Darren. He asked that the shimmering black and green scales of Sargath's hide be painted the red of the Crimson Shield. Darren agreed, but is very disturbed when Azim shows him the black obsidian tokens he collected from the undead of Draka’s bridge.

    Leosys headed to Windemere’s watering hole looking for information on the buried city of Terrathor. He learned a little from a local storyteller, who then brought him and some of the others to Jerald the sage. Jerald then spent a sleepless night looking over the documents that Leosys brought from Prince Pelopidas, and his own tomes and scrolls. In the morning he provided two tidbits of information. A star chart of what used to be visible above the city, and that a smaller city named Rothenthor ob der Nalivaga is quite close to Terrathor. Jerald said that Rothenthor lies somewhere on the Shadowvein river, which means Terrathor may also lie on that underground river.

    Azim asked Jerald about the stones and he promptly informed him that he won’t have anyone waving around necromatic stones from Ebilith in his home, he has children after all.

    Recruitment and Return to the Free Cities
    Having safely escorted the halfling caravan back to their own lands, the Crimson Shield continued on to their home base in the free cities. Most return to the city of Merriclet. Commander Angranth, anticipating the war with the hobgoblin kingdom of Krangi, begins aggressive recruitment of additional men. Over a hundred recruits are added to the company from various parts of the free cities and strict training regiments began.

    (The characters were all allowed to assist in the recruitment drive. All but Bulch succeeded to some degree.)

    Commander Angranth summoned the characters and informed them that they will be dispatched under the command of Captain Jeremiah to the village of Boglet. The White Citadel and the Company of the Spider-bite have called for aid from what they believe is growing hostile raids from Lizardfolk of the nearby swamps. Angranth believes it may have something to do with the lizardfolks patron, the dragon Nagoronomell the black, becoming furious over the loss of his son Sargath.

    The Commander departs with his own cohort to “Brandobia” in north western Marbach to fulfill another contract.

    The Raid of Boglet and Apraxis the Shaman
    The Crimson Shield starts setting up defences around the town of Boglet. Bulch and a number of other scouts are dispatched to see if they can find any signs of Lizardfolk mobilization in the area. As Bulch is in the middle of reporting to Captain Jeremiah that there are no signs, screams are heard from the other side of the village.

    A rolling skirmish occured and each character is faced with a pair of Lizardfolk warriors. Azim quickly dispatched the pair facing him. Kazura, is the next to win free of his foes, killing one with his blade, while the other was set on fire by his aura of flames and dived into the nearby swamp. Bulch avoided serious harm by jumping in an out of combat, but he watched as one of his fellow scouts got cut down before he is able to eliminate the two Lizardfolk.

    Leosys fairs poorly against his foes, but thankfully, Kazura is able to rush to his aid and provide healing. Kazura defeats one, and Leosys chaos hammer causes the other to drop his weapons and begin ritually dancing in circles.

    While this is happening Captain Jeremiah is having difficulty rallying the men to him. Azim, comes to his captain’s aid, using his Charismatic leadership to solidify a battleline. They start rolling over their foes, until the lizardfolk raiders managed to form up, gathering around a standard bearing multiple human skulls.

    Bulch overheared chanting and sought out the source, a lizardfolk shaman and his bodyguard. Bulch attempted to sneak up on the shaman, but his invisibility was foiled by the shamans augmented senses through his 3-aspect of the wild spell. Kazura and Leosys quickly move to assist, and a tense battle is joined.

    Meanwhile, Azim stood at the center of the battle line and came face-to-face with the lizardfolk warchief and his standard-bearer. Together he and Captain Jeremiah managed to kill the standard-bearer and Jeremiah tossed the standard into the dirt. This caused the lizardfolk to flee in disarray. The Warchief seeks revenge on Azim for the death of his shell brother, many of the Crimson Shield watched the mesmerizing exchange of blows. After a particularly skilled flurry Azim knocked the warchief unconscious.

    The magic of the lizardfolk Shaman Apraxis is strong. His chaos Magic matched all three Heroes. But eventually, with body guard defeated and he is caught while trying to make a final escape. Some clever roleplay (by Leosys in particular as a fellow priest of Donobrem) convinced Apraxis that they are also servants of Nagaronomell and Apraxis agreed to take them to see the black dragon. Of course, Captain Jeremiah knows nothing of these plans.

    (Note: Apraxis called Azim - “a servant of Moorak” when he first saw him. The players have not yet talked with the warchief or any other captives.)
  • Crimson Shield Session 8: Graveyards and Councils

    In the aftermath of the Battle of Boglet, we had 3 players:

    Bulch - thief/assassin type. Half-elf + half-orc, can turn invisible. (played by Eric) rank scout
    Azim - skeleton knight due to a cursed suit of armour (played by Aneesh)
    now rank corporal first class (master corporal)
    Kazura - Paladin of Sarissa. Former Squire of the knights of the Godpack - found their methods questionable. (played by Pravreen) rank specialist

    Kozura leveled up and decided to increase his faith points and acquire a cohort! For some while, starting on the return trip from the elven city of Onhalon, Kozura has been seeing a moose. In Boglet he showed up again. Over the past few weeks they became friends. At the opening of the session, Kozura introduced the team to his new steed, Brutus the moose.

    Bulch leveled up and gaining a lifepoint, and a new defensive talent - heart of the dragon. This can help defend against magic in particular.

    Aftermath of the Battle of Boglet
    Azim questioned the warchief, Hadrapat, who insisted that he would not be a slave, and that as he had fought well Azim should honour him by “eating his heart.” Hadrapat also said that Nagaronomell the black protected the lizardfolk from Moorak.

    Captain Jeremiah was eventually convinced that a small party should be sent to the White Citadel, via Hommlet. This party would bring the co-operative Apraxis the Shaman with them. Jeremiah insisted that corporal Harold be part of the expedition.

    The Grave of Baron Himmel of Marbach
    At a crossroads between Boglet, Merriclet and Homlet stands a grave from one of the great battles of the War of the Fallen Hammer. Corporal Harold insisted on stopping at the grave of Lord Himmel, 2nd Baron of Marbach, one of his heroes.

    As the expedition stops to pay their respects to the fallen, Bulch’s dragonheart pulses, and Azim suddenly finds himself unable to move. The voice of Moorak demands he leaves “his” osidian stones here at the baron’s mausoleum. Azim questioned the unfamiliar voice, and Kozure sought to free his companion with his prayers. The negative energy proved to much and ripped into Kozure’s life force.

    Dark mist swirls, and the spirit of Moorak emerged. He demanded the stones again, and then let loose a wave of necrotic energy, injuring everyone but Bulch spared thanks to his dragonheart. Apraxis the lizardfolk shaman was able to join his own chaotic magics with Kozure, to dispel the spell trigger that brought Moorak’s spirit here.

    Lord Rufus, and the Wizard Burne of Hommlet
    Lord Rufus greeted the expedition with an armed detachment of his own at the gates of Hommlet. The group is brought into the keep and into council with Lord Rufus and Burne the wizard, where they learned that the White Citadel is already under siege by lizardfolk and Nagaronomell the black.

    A hasty plan is approved via crystal ball by Bianca and Wilfred of the White Citadel. The Crimson Shield is authorized to seek out Nagaronomell and either seek to bring about negotiations, or to bring him to battle. Burne and Rufus gifted the characters a healing potion, a feather token, and a wand of icy wind.

    And Now?
    The expedition pressed on ever closer to the White Citadel, and stumbled onto a battle between undead and lizardfolk. The wingbeats of a dragon can be heard . . .
  • Session Summary 9: Dragons, Sieges, and Necromancers

    We had a full house for the session consisting of:

    Robert the Healer, priest of Elnadar (player David) rank specialist
    Leosys FenFir, elven Acolyte of Chaos (played by Kelley) rank specialist
    Bulch - thief/assassin type. Half-elf + half-orc, can turn invisible. (played by Eric) rank scout
    Azim - skeleton knight due to a cursed suit of armour (played by Aneesh)
    now rank corporal first class (master corporal)
    Kazura - Paladin of Sarissa. Former Squire of the knights of the Godpack - found their methods questionable. (played by Pravreen) rank specialist
    Kikuchiyo - a warrior with an ice-blade from a distant land. Former (?) Silver Lantern, and recent recruit to the Crimson Shield. (Played by Luke)


    Jump Back: Leaving Hommlet
    We did a quick jump back to introduce Kikuchiyo. Jaroo made a brief appearance, transforming from a bird, and handing Kikuchiyo three clear crystals to help fuel his ice blade. Burne immediately pulled Jaroo aside, apparently berating him for spying on them once again.

    The Battle in the Woods
    Coming upon a Lizardfolk and undead locked in battle, the Crimson Shield dove into action against the undead.
    A spectre ripped away Bulch’s soul from his body, but with the prayers of Kazura and Leosys, the spectre eventually disappeared into the ground and Bulch recovered his body. The battle turned in favour of the Crimson Shield, and Apraxis the lizardfolk Shaman had managed to help the lizardfolk and the mercenaries unite into a defensive line.
    However, Kikuchiyo was badly injured by a wright who had drained his life force. This is when Tanagreal the green dragon swept out of the sky, her breath weapon destroyed many of the undead, but her sudden arrival also sent many of the Crimson Shield fleeing for cover.
    Azim was the first to shake off the fear, and re-engaged the wright. After a several tense moments, the wright was slain, and the rest of the undead were methodicatlly hacked to pieces.

    Audience with Tanagreal the Green
    (pronouced Ta-na-gre-al, apparently syllables are a big deal to dragons)
    The Crimson Shield learned that Tanagreal is working with her old mate, Nagaronomell the black to help find their missing children. Seeing as members of the Crimson Shield slew their son Sargath, and are carrying a shield made of dragonscale and Sargath’s heart. This causes some trepadation.
    Miraculously, Tanagreal did not notice either of these things, and agreed to arrange a meeting with Nagaronomell.

    Audience with Nagaronomell the Black
    (pronouced Na-ga-ron-no-mell, apparently syllables are a big deal to dragons)
    The Crimson Shield are brought to the edge of the siege around the White Citadell, and then over to a nearby bog. Here Nagaronomell partially emerged from the water, and held court.
    Negotiations became especially tense when Nagaronomell discovered that Bulch carried Sargath’s heart. He demanded to speak to his son, via Bulch’s attunement to the heart. To everyone’s surprise as Bulch and Nagaronomell concentrated, an image of Sargath appeared above the heart. The great black dragon demanded to know if Bulch was involved in his death, and Sargath replied “No father, he was not. It was sometime later that this one took my heart.” He asked if any of the men and elves standing here had been present at Sargath’s death, and Sargath replied “I can see only the one who holds my heart, and you Father.”

    With tensions lowered, they discussed that Moorak was hiding somewhere in the White Citadel, and that this was the dragons true target, since they believed him to have something to do with the disappearance of their children and new that he was responsible for the death of many of Nagaronomell’s servants (the lizardfolk). The Crimson shield proposed to approach the Citadel, seek to negotiate a peace and find and ferret out Moorak if he really was inside the Citadel. Nagaronomell welcomed them to the lizardfolk camp while he discussed this with Tanagreal.

    Interrupted Dreams
    In the middle of the night, Bulch awoke to being pinned by dragon claws. Tanagreal’s head loomed menacingly above him. Fortunately for the hapless Bulch, he remained relatively calm an offered to let her speak to her son. After enduring the pain of scalding dragon tears, and a whispered conversation he can’t quite hear, Tanagreal left.

    Before the Gates of the White Citadel
    Bianca, wizard of the tower of stars, and Idrin Ironbeard, crossed the moat to talk with the Crimson Shield. Suspicious of some foul play, Robert the healer quietly used a cantrip to see if any necromancy was afoot. (He rolled a 12). His spell revealed that Bianca’s soul was somehow caught, and that she was being controlled by a fell spirit.
    Siezing the opportunity, Robert attempted to use his life magics to bring her soul back. Idrin charged Robert, but Azim interposed, a wrestling match followed with Azim at a serious disadvantage. Before things got worse, Robert, joined by Leosys, were able to pull her soul back, and dismiss the other spirit.
    Horns sounded. The gate of the White Citadel opened and Moorak strode onto the field, flanked by 4 ogre zombies, and the living ogre chieftain Lubash.

    After a titanic struggle Moorak gated away with a prepared word of recall. Significant notes:
    Kikuchiyo’s ice blade was claimed by Moorak during the struggle.
    First Leosys and then Kazura’s souls were sucked into a black gem that Moorak used to drain everyone’s life.
    Azim was under some sort of control or possession by Moorak when he left.
    Nagaronomell and Tanagreal battled what seemed to be their son Abrinthor the red, who had been transformed into some manner of undead dragon. The exact results forom this struggle are unknown.
    Robert somehow raised one of the undead ogres back to life.
    Idrin was occupied throughout the struggle by killing Lubash, the ogre Chief.

    (Only Bulch was left in positive hitpoints when Moorak left, he himself being at -2, and seeing three opponents who could possibly still put up a fight.)
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