Tag Archives: worldwound

Wrath of the Righteous Chapter Three, Demon’s Heresy – Second Session

Second Session (14 page pdf) – Our heroes continue to investigate the Worldwound and slay various beasties found therein.

First up: The Shrine of the Fallen. Interesting note, we were having fun with playing explorer and naming all the terrain features we came across regardless of whether anyone else had named them (natives, what do they know) and I declared this place the Shrine of the Fallen.  And later we found out that was totally its name and the undead that haunt it are called “fallen.” Noice!

Zanedra

Zanedra

Next up: Some half elf chick named Zanedra and some Baphomet cultists. She has a monster with her that turns out to be her eidolon, she’s a summoner! Its name is something like “Spinnarabeth,” which is weird because the suffix -beth is used for a lot of villain names in this AP. I immediately develop a conspiracy theory that this is usual among evil people and resolve to keep a better eye on Irabeth back in Drezen. We take Zanedra captive and send her back for justice, which might be dangerous (won’t her eidolon just come back? Eh, who knows.).

Then it’s bodaks… Shawanda, Trystan, and I pretty much kill whatever we get to hit so it’s just a race to see who goes first.

Antonius steps into the bodak and smites it three times with his three-section staff. He destroys it utterly. Shawanda puts her sacred blade back into the scabbard with an irritated sigh.

But then I fail to kill Skullgrim the nabassu in one attack routine and she gets to kill him, so balance is restored to the force.

Wrath of the Righteous Chapter Three, Demon’s Heresy – First Session

Jesker Helton

Jesker Helton

First Session (11 page pdf) – We fight some random wildlife and then have a brotherly encounter with some barbarians.  Not really.

We are on a quest to find some demented priest of Erastil who has gone all Number 23. We find him and kill the demon he vomits up.  He’s still evil, but then again so is everyone we take on as minons in this AP. The dead Erastilian hero whose tomb we find him in is interred with some super magic bow that Trystan covets.

Trystan recovers his commune spell to ask the burning question, “Would Erastil want us (me) to have Delamar’s bow?”
Shelyn’s reply, “No.”
“What’s that Shelyn? I can’t quite make you out… zzzzCRACKLE,” says Trystan.
The rest of the group stares sternly at him and he sighs.

Retriever

Retriever

Then, we go on patrol with Jestak our evil barbarian captive.

Trystan raises the alarm, “Evildoers are afoot!” Antonius and Jestak leap to their feet.
Jestak yells, “Evildoers? I have been told we hate evildoers!”
Shawanda stares sternly at Jestak.

I got to try to grapple a retriever, which actually posed a grappling challenge for me which was nice. I talk everyone into bringing the jewel-eyed spider skulls back to complete our dance club in Drezen.

I had to leave before the next part, where the group got to Winter Sun Hall and met up with a barbarian leader who is connected to Shawanda (he calls her “Sister,”), they both were exposed to the same awfulness that started her down her mythic path. He attacks, and Trystan just kills him with an arrow of human slaying. Apparently the keeping everyone evil alive stuff only applies in some cases, when it won’t cause a huge buzzkill for someone else’s plotline. Sad trombone.

Wrath of the Righteous Chapter Two, Sword of Valor – Sixth Session

Sixth Session (12 page pdf) – And finally we liberate Drezen and retake the Sword of Valor! We relax by going to kill some grandmas.

Deeper in the dungeon, a bunch of Deskari statues do a phantasmal killer on the NPC Sosiel; he lives but is driven insane. I have to choke him out too (I choke out about one person per game session). Then, it’s a Grimtooth’s Traps moment with a pit of green slime that nearly devours Shawanda totally.

Then we find Aron Kir (Sam Winchester) under the thrall of a shadow demon. I KO him, the demon comes out and it gets frisky. It tosses Shawanda all the way back into the green slime pit, which is entertaining in a morbid way. It turns into a festival of me and Shawanda tanking it, the healers pouring healing into us, and Calanthe magic missiling away (sovereign against incorporeal foes!).

We come away with the Sword of Valor.  Huzzah!

Then we get Drezen in order and try to redeem/heal our various evil and/or insane posse.

  • Joran Vhane – evil dwarf
  • Chaleb – evil homicidal cavalier
  • Uziel – evil tiefling rogue
  • Sosiel – insane cleric
  • Aron – formerly possessed drug addict
  • Jestak – evil homicidal barbarian

Yes, these are the understudies for our party of paladins.

Octoeagle

Octoeagle

We go out on patrol and find three crazy grandmas who are actually hag cultists of Lamashtu conducting Island of Dr. Moreau experiments and have created a largely-useless “octoeagle” (octopus/eagle hybrid) and “clawyote” (coyote with crab claws). We kill them for crimes against nature. We loot their country-clutter decor with abandon and take the two animals back to be mascots for our two army units.

 

Wrath of the Righteous Chapter Two, Sword of Valor – Fifth Session

Fifth Session (13 page pdf) –  Though we’ve killed Staunton Vhane, there’s a lower level that still needs clearing in Drezen. “Someone’s in my root cellar. Someone with a fresh soul!”

First we do loot distribution.  I should do a separate post with our 3l33t loot tracking and distribution spreadsheet format, it makes it easy to keep up with it all. You find literally 100 different things per AP volume and tracking it needs some rigor.

The dumb demonblood addict has run off again. We head into the dungeons of Drezen to find him and the Sword of Valor (really a banner, in a case of false advertising). Vampires and demons and such annoy us until we’re finally at a loss as to where to go, we have to bring in Staunton Vhane’s brother Joran to do the dwarf thing and show us the secret door we can’t find.

Salamander

Salamander

Inside, we find the Corruption Forge and a bunch of salamanders.  I love salamanders, I don’t know why. Probably the super boss AD&D MM art. Everyone else starts taking the slow way down and I just swashbuckler-swing down there, get in the middle of ’em and start whaling away. It hurts, but a lot of my Iron Mountain and Champion of Irori powers have to do with staying in one place and being surrounded…

Then it’s a priestess and schir demons and crystal widgets. Calathe actually has shatter for some reason (well, there have been a lot of demonic crystals in this campaign) and she brings it down while we destroy them in detail.

Wrath of the Righteous Chapter Two, Sword of Valor – Fourth Session

staunton_vhane_by_andantonius

Staunton Vhane

Fourth Session (14 page pdf) – We slay and slay and slay until we finally get to the dwarven antipaladin Staunton Vhane. And then we slay some more!

First I choke out another succubus. My new imprinting hand mythic trick is very Irorian.  Then we fight a bunch of insolence demons that make us insolent for a while. The difference is hard to notice.

Then it’s antipaladin time! He has a brother, blood demons, fiendish minotaurs… Finally, a stand-up fight! We get a good tactical exercise and wipe the floor with ’em.  Then it’s all over but the looting and the intel gathering.

Wrath of the Righteous Chapter Two, Sword of Valor – Third Session

Third Session (12 page pdf) – We reduce the remaining demonic armies and lay siege to the fortress of Drezen. The command staff inserts via a poorly defended point and sweeps and clears a good portion of the ground level, allowing the paladin forces into the keep.

First we personally assault the brimorak-manned catapult towers, then we lead our forces against their armies and rout them. That then leaves the citadel buttoned up – time for PC SpecOps strikes!

citadel_drezen

Here’s an example snippet of purple prose describing how that goes:

Calanthe then peppers the other brimorak with a magic missiles to leave it horribly wounded. Trystan finishes the job with two shots, clean through the creature’s eyes. It falls from the parapet, screaming like a hell-muppet.

We kill constructs and demons and cultists with gimp masks and elementals. We come across another shrine where Iomedae appears to us again.  Oh, as if, we’re LG not Lawful Stupid, we channel some positive energy and when she takes damage we smoke her. She’s a succubus and she enslaves Shawanda but I give her an Egorian style beat down.

They all pause to pray at the altar of Iomedae. “Forgive us our lusty thoughts!” mumbles Shawanda under her breath. The other crusaders try to make sense of her words. “Lusty slots?” thinks Trystan. “Hungry slots?” thinks Tsuguri. “Lusty sluts?” thinks Antonius.

This is real dialogue, Patrick was muttering and we couldn’t hear him, and we all heard variations on dirty things, as we are wont to do. We fight a mimic, during which Tsuguri insists that pee is the only thing that will get the monster’s adhesive excretion off people.

After several rounds of death and Tsuguri attempting to urinate on his party members, they all come unstuck.
They find four suits of masterwork full plate, one of which is magical, mithril, and painted gold and Iomedae-y. Shawanda swoons. Trystan starts to explain how he might benefit from it as well and she yells, “Bling bling honky!” and flees the room with
the armor.

In Aliens fashion, we declare the area “secure” and let in our paladins through the front door to occupy the better part of the first floor.  We go up to one of the parapets and find a crazy barbarian woman that’s decapitated all her tribesmen. Calanthe (Tim) decides to use a spell to impersonate antipaladin Staunton Vhane halfway through this which comes close to ending in fratricide. I choke her out (monk grappling is so great against casters and two-handed weapon users!). We toss her in a tiger cage and wrap up!

This was a fun session, we were a little punchy so it got a little silly but good.  We’re decently overpowered in this AP and it’s a nice change – it’s boring rolling over opposition when it’s meaningless grind like a couple sessions ago, but when it’s interesting stuff it’s as fun as being on the ropes all the time. Plus, it makes us feel more OK with taking prisoners and negotiating and stuff, as opposed to “I MUST USE MY ACTION ECONOMY FOR TOTAL WAR OR WE WILL BE TPKED.” That gets old.

 

 

Wrath of the Righteous Chapter Two, Sword of Valor – Second Session

Second Session ( 14 page pdf) – Our army reaches Drezen and we start in on the reduction of its defenses, fighting both armies and monsters with increasingly ridiculous names.

Nabassu

A lot gets done this session!  First, we fight a nabassu in ruins. It’s a lively battle and there’s much loot to be had.  After that, we head towards Drezen with our army.  We are semi thwarted by demonic locusts but get through that.

Then we find out that Aron Kir, aka “Sosiel’s bottom,” has a demon blood addiction problem like Sam from Supernatural. We decide immediately that Sosiel looks like Dean and Aron looks like Sam and it’s all slashfic all the time thereafter.

When we get to Drezen, we reconnoiter and find it’s basically a bunch of zones with armies in it…

Drezen

Drezen

We take out Southbank first and then try to capture the bridge, but unlucky rolling lets them destroy it before we can secure it. So we clear out the cemetery and Paradise Hill (apparently even crusader citadels have low income housing projects) while we rebuild.  We stretch the mass combat rules to their breaking point with our cunning tactics.

In the cemetery we come across a monster, “Moxaboo the berbalang.” I laughed so hard at his name I nearly peed myself and named him “Riddleyboo” for the couple rounds he lasts against us. Come on Filipinos, you have a perfectly good monster and give it the goofiest ass name ever.

Then a mythic cold chimera thing (I call it a cryo-mera!) attacks us. It’s a brutal fight and I get in my patented backbreaker move! It counts as a mythic trial so we all get a new mythic level and everything goes all Highlander for a minute. Good times!

 

Wrath of the Righteous Chapter Two, Sword of Valor – First Session

Queen Galfrey of Mendev

Queen Galfrey of Mendev

First Session (12 page pdf)  – Mendevian Queen Galfrey sends us on a mission… From God. We’re off to retake the fortress of Drezen deep within enemy lines. So we take our paladin army and encounter both troops and treachery along our way.

We lead the Army of Kenabres across the blasted terrain. Calanthe is selected to lead the army since she has the highest Charisma, leading us (well, instigated by me) to dub her “Khaleesi.”

One of our NPCs betrays us, which is par for the course.  Being all good, we fret over it before executing her for treason.

Some army combat, some ruin exploration.  And we fight an incubus. Decent.

Wrath of the Righteous Chapter One, The Worldwound Incursion – Fifth Session

Areelu Vorlesh

Areelu Vorlesh

Fifth Session (14 page pdf) – We thwart the Forces of Evil ™ and destroy their captive wardstone bit, hurling the demonic forces back – for a time.  And we all experience THE QUICKENING!!!

We continue to sweep and clear the Gray Garrison. Many tieflings and cultists meet their end.  “It is thus that the fields of Justice are nourished with the blood of our enemies!” claims the session scribe.

We do get to fight a peryton, which is cool. And a goat-demon.  We hear from prisoners that there’s a minotaur around, leading to the following fun quotes:

“Minotaurs are bad news too,” shares Antonius. “I read a comic back in camp that says they’re more than a little… rapey.” Everyone shuffles uncomfortably at that thought.

Then a bit later,

From up above the minotaur howls.
Trystan tells Rogoff [his mongrelman henchman], “You go first!”
Rogoff looks dubious. “For what it’s worth, boss, I read the same comic book  about minotaurs that Antonius did. And you guys normally go in first – I’m not sure I feel  comfortable about this arrangement.”

For some reason the baddie, Jeslyn, spread all her defenders out into conveniently small packages leading to her, so we kill each group easily and then attack her solo.  Solo casters – why do they even try?  I run over and put her in a grapple and then convert it to the figure four leg lock and then it’s all over. It’s what I do with all solo casters – they just can’t do anything about it.

And then the shit really hits the fan.  Irabeth destroys the last fragment of Kenabres’ Wardstone with a rod of cancellation.  It explodes, it kills every demon in the zip code, we hallucinate for a while. Areelu Vorlesh gates in and sics six babau demons on us.  But we are powered-up with all kinds of special abilities and also she gets blown back through the gate. The baubaus attack and start gating in more babaus. This is quite a fight and we emerge victorious!  I club-dance and we gain… a Mythic Tier!

For those not familiar with it, Mythic Adventures is a cool new Paizo system that, instead of adding levels like Epic, adds a layer of being a kinda demigod type on top of our normal levels. So now we get weird superpowers!  (Go see our character sheets by level on the campaign page for more.)

Wrath of the Righteous Chapter One, The Worldwound Incursion – Fourth Session

Fantasy Janitors At Work

Fantasy Janitors At Work

Fourth Session (16 page pdf) – We continue to hit demon cultist hardpoints in the ruins of Kenabres with the help of mongrelmen and lesbian paladins.

This session is mainly fight after fight with tieflings, dretches, and various other evil varmints of various description. That part wasn’t all that exciting. (Ironically fights in Pathfinder, while supposed to be scenes of high action like in a movie, are sometimes boring… Like Peter Jackson and Michael Bay are managing to do with their big action scenes.) The interesting things that came up were:

Mongrelman rangers! We got a squad of mongrelman helpers and they were very helpful. We named them, and everyone ran one. Antonius had some soul-searching to do though – the faith of Irori advocates physical and mental perfection but mongrelmen are the ultimate in mutated – it just kinda bothered him.

Janitorial work!  So we find a ruined shrine to Iomedae in the Grey Garrison and it’s pretty clear we “should” clean it up. Will all the monsters just go into stasis for a couple hours while we do so? Well sure, no problem. This will come up again, by the way. We are told we get a “devotion point” for that, a fact that Chris and I try to erase from our brains – we’ve had about enough of Pathfinder APs giving us something-or-other points and driving our party-mates into fits of bizarre behavior (like gift-buying in Jade Regent) because they see a new rules system than needs manipulation.  If we’re going to start getting Divine Janitor Points for clearing poo from every shrine we enter I’d rather the mechanics be obscured from me.

But, we level and get some phat lewt.

Wrath of the Righteous Chapter One, The Worldwound Incursion – Third Session

Ruined Kenabres

Ruined Kenabres

Third Session (17 page pdf) – It’s all Mogadishu style combat in the streets of Kenabres as we try to get back to base. We fight cultists and cavaliers and carrion-eaters and cosplayers.

We kick off with a more in-character discussion of the captive Uziel’s fate.  In the wake of last session, Chris and I spoke and agreed to try to push the group to do better on discussing that stuff really in character and not meta, so we spurred that to set the tone a little.

And finally we emerge into a totally destroyed Kenabres. Not just mostly messed up, like “there are small pockets of survivors, occasionally.” We meet up with refugees and cultists alike.

One of the more stand-out encounters was with a cavalier who was getting set to immolate a bunch of librarians, I guess to show he was all about switching to the winning side now that his insect overlords were in charge. Our train of prisoners and wounded now way outstrips our actual party.

But then in one of those low-level shockers, Calathe gets murdered!  Some junk cultists with scythes that we see way ahead of time and set an ambush for nearly do me in and definitely do her in; a crit at that level is a coffin-nail pounder. Then Tim takes over Horgus Gwerm, who is also summarily murdered by the same group of cultists! Tim plays a librarian for the rest of the session; we discuss how that perhaps “looters” are welcome to it since everyone’s dead really.

OK, so, crap, we are down to like 4 real PCs (Matt didn’t come today), a librarian, two corpses, two cripples, and six captives. We go from place to place trying to find friendlies and fail. We get to Anevia’s house and some invisible caster orc guy attacks. We kill him readily but then get confused; his picture showed all this armor and a big three-horned helmet and a ranseur but then his stats are that he is a sorcerer and has no armor. We decided that he was a cosplayer and that the armor was plaster and fake, just done so the other orcs wouldn’t pick on him for being a big pussy or something.

Finally we meet some surviving defenders including Anevia’s wife, Irabeth the orcish paladin. The GM explains that they’re chicks, and married, and one’s a LG paladin, etc.  Then like somewhat later, Chris says something like “Hey guys… I think she may be a lesbian,” in the tone of “I am just realizing this.” This causes some bafflement and hilarity; he’s tried to explain what he meant several times but we block it out because it’s more entertaining to mentally picture seeing two women talk about being married and having a bystander say “Wait a minute… I think that one lady is a lesbian.” I’m sure he’ll chime in here to defend his honor but my fingers are already in my ears.

They arrange to raise Calanthe from the dead as long as we go hit three cultist hard points; since that’s what we were planning to do anyway that’s fine. I also got lippy with Irabeth, the GM kinda kept rolling on us with “well you’re not actual official Crusaders, just trainees, maybe you can’t decide to execute evil prisoners…” She started to hem and haw about swearing us in as Crusaders and that maybe some grand poobah needed to do it and I told her in no uncertain terms that we’d already killed more cultists than most Crusaders, and that we were six of the something like nine total non-crippled paladin types in the Goddamned county overrun with demons.  She relented, and now we’re Crusaders!

Wrath of the Righteous Chapter One, The Worldwound Incursion – Second Session

Hosilla

Hosilla

Second Session (13 page pdf) – We go kill naughty cultist mongrelmen and their cultist leader “Hozilla.” No, seriously. “Hozilla.”

One set of “good” mongrelmen tells us we should go genocide some “bad” mongrelmen.  So of course we do.  And then we conduct enhanced interrogations, “Lawful Good style.”

We end up having a bunch of debates about what the right Good response is to a lot of this; our characters worship a variety of gods (Iomedae, Shelyn, Irori, some pagan god) and so there’s an interesting plurality of opinions there. I hate to gripe, but the GM kinda decided anytime we started talking about that he should butt in and tell us what the “right” response is. This totally jammed up any meaningful roleplay around the topic. Matt would basically say “yeah yeah what the GM said” and those of us with different opinions would just hunker down and cast sidelong glances at each other.

That got me in a bit of a bad mood, and then when we had a fight with some mongrelmen and I was told that it was impossible for my monk to jump a 4′ barricade – not “here’s a high Jump DC,” just “you can’t do it,” I pretty much checked out of the rest of the session and just did damage when told to. Normally I would have been jazzed about getting the death blow in on someone named Hozilla but eh.

Then we find a super artifact sword and give it to Shawanda, which is cool.  Her player, Patrick, is somewhat retiring a lot of the time so I like it when he gets an uber plot gizmo or whatever because it gives him more spotlight.

We also took a prisoner, Uziel, after some debate. There’s an unsubtly high premium on redeeming bad folks in this AP so we may as well get started I guess.

So, not the end of the world, just an off session.  It does raise my antennae though about too much railroading in the AP – not just in terms of “now here is your next scene,” but in the “here’s what you are supposed to do in this scene, and think, and feel.” I had some bad-touch experiences with that earlier in my gaming life and I’m touchy about it. (Yeah you, White Wolf staffer.)  There was a little of that with the NPCs in Jade Regent – “these NPCs have the magic hook on them, so you can be friends with them, but not these other people you meet, regardless of whether you find them more interesting.” I’m starting to get the sense of that in the “redeem the enemies” follies as well, and that will be disappointing.