Apr 232012
 

This last week we finished up our Spelljammer campaign which meant this week end I took my hefty Pathfinder core book out of my gaming backpack.
Our little group has been playing Pathfinder ever since the Beta rules came out. We averaged about once a week and we’ve played all through a bunch of the Adventure Paths. It’s difficult to say which one was best. They were all fun and I had some memorable characters and moments along the way.
Now, this isn’t anything against Paizo nor is about DNDNext. We’re just changing things up a bit. This week we’ll be starting up a Classic Deadlands campaign and then the week after that I’ll be starting up a Dresden Files game. So stay tuned to for those goodies and hopefully some great tales of misadventure. And don’t worry, we’ll go back and play Pathfinder again.

Apr 162012
 

We finished up our Kingmaker campaign this last week. It was a fun ride and that final session was a real roller coaster.
We did our final push into the realm of the Nymph Queen. It wasn’t going to be pretty. Our cleric didn’t make the game session. So how did this whole thing go down.
First encounter, a dozen ghosts and no cleric but at least we had an oracle. So no turning but a long string of Mass Cure Moderate Wounds eventually did the trick.
We then ran into a Jabberwocky and then we ran away from it and did a damned good job of going around it.
It was then into the castle itself. Our next memorable encounter was the Medusa. This almost went really badly. Yeah, we ended up with some player character statuary.
And finally, the Nymph Queen herself. This damned near was the first time as group that we would have “lost” an Adventure Path. Once again, we had a problem with player character statuary. The bard and I both got turned to stone. But we had one Stone to Flesh scroll. That brought me back for a couple of rounds only to be poisoned to death then teleported to another plane. So here’s the score card. Bard turned to stone. Sorcerer/Oracle dead and zipped off to another plane. That left the ranger and the elf Fighter/Wizard. It did not look good by any measure but these two player characters did manage to finally pull it off but only barely.
Overall, Kingmaker was fun. The kingdom building did get a bit tedious and some of the early adventure opportunities felt a bit like we wandering around in an MMO collecting quests. But a good time was had by all. This is thanks to a good group and a good GM.
The most valuable player character has got to Rolf the Ranger. Nothing survived getting into his sights. On more than one occasion, the ranger was the one who saved the party’s bacon. Special kudos to Ashley and her ranger Rolf!
Next up for our group: Classic Deadlands!

Apr 022012
 

Well, there should be only about one more session of Kingmaker then it’s off to Deadlands. The game continues to be fun as we continued to stomp our through the Nymph Queens domain. And as I promised when this only whole thing started. Only the good parts.
We finally face that big bad assed black dragon of the Adventure Path. You know how they say that there’s no save or die in Pathfinder. Fail a save at high levels, it may not kill you but chances are it will set up to be killed off just about as quickly. That’s what happened to the dragon. I have a feeling that if we weren’t lucky and the dice mojo was working in our favor then that fight might have been much more drastic.
We ran across some freaky flying owlbears. Our ranger normally hats owlbears but these poor beasts seemed sick and in pain. In odd turn of mercy, we decided to try figure out why these creatures were suffering. A little magic, a little talking to the animals type stuff and we start to figure out that its normal sunlight and normalcy that is making them so suffer. So we grew impatient and slaughtered them.
Then we ran across the lake with schools small freaky red worms swimming around. Being player characters we played around with it for a while trying to figure out just how dangerous the situation was. We sent some summoned creatures to check things out and they never came back. Being player characters we just couldn’t walk away. So a couple of us buffed up and jumped in. The fools who did this were the Fighter/Cleric and that crazy half-orc. Oh wait. That’s me.
The neat thing about this was that I finally got use Form of the Dragon. Oh, black dragons have a swim speed. This is going to be fun. The rest of the party decided not to go for a swim. Enter three gargantuan worms. I was just a little medium dragon. This was a tough and fun fight. Round One, it swallows me. I use my breath weapon. The GM rules that it won’t get a Save because I am inside it. Round Two, worm grinds me up in its gullet. I bite and claw my out. Round Three, worm misses. I do a bunch of attacks and not much. Round Four, worm swallows me again, I claw my way out. But decided to stay inside because it’s much easier to hit the damned thing from the inside than it is from the outside. Heck, I end up taking just about the same amount of damage.
So that was it folks. The good parts. We should have about one more session left. It’s been fun kids.

Mar 192012
 

It’s that down hill ride that always happens at the end of an Adventure Path. As players, we get a little cocky and have a real idea about what is going on. We’re comfortable with our characters and we’re ready to kick some ass.
We started off the session by taking care of the last incursion into our world. Miles of tangled fast-growing briers were threatening Pit Axe. We really not that fond of the place but, hell, taking care of this would make it easier to deal with the stuff in the First World. Or at least that’s our working theory. Needless to say, we smacked down the trio of Athach’s and nasty plant monsters without much problem. Then we ground up a troll and his pride of saber tooth tigers.
It was now time for us to take the fight to the first world. We muscled to through two encounters here. And each was a great opportunity for individual characters to shine. First, we tangled with a four-armed frost giant barbarian. As was not our normal style, we partially talked our way through this one. Our king decided to go all hero on us and challenged the giant to one on one combat. We had a bad felling about this but heck, he actually won without too much interference from the rest of the party. And damn the fight didn’t take that long.
Second, it was time for the colossal rook (the bird not the chess piece). The battle field was pretty simple. A huge open plain with a mile high stone spire in the middle. From about a mile away, we see the rook and it sees us. The bird swoops down a flies straight for us. The DM does the math and we have about three rounds before it’s upon us. The ranger opens up with his bow at extreme range and everyone else starts casting buffs. Next round, a couple fireballs singed the bird. And the ranger opens up again. Have a mentioned that the ranger is like a freaking cruise missile. Two rounds of arrows plus about four crits. The rook didn’t have a chance to reach us.

Kingmaker: Two Rangers, One Quiver

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Mar 052012
 

I know a lot of times I’ve droned on about some of the more banal moments of the game but this was fun filled session and like I promised before here are the juicy bits.
We talked about our plans and how we got our asses kicked last session. Basically, we decided to take on the Nymp Queen’s incursions on our turf first and then take the fight to her.
Frost Giants sound like a cross between the Swedish Chef and an extra from Deliverance. The combination of Draconic Reservoir, Detonate and Fireball seems to do a very good job of reinforcing that “Fire! BAD!”
We absolutely hate Mandragora’s. When a third of the party is incapacitated due to blood lose and confusion, well, things like that tend to make monsters a favorite target for player characters.
The best thing to take out a Ranger is another Ranger. It’s even more interesting when both of them are specialized in archery and don’t normally face that much direct damage. The reaction was much like that of Captain Hammer (“Oh, I’m in pain. I think this is what pain feels like”) or as was said around the table, “So that’s what it feels like when I fill something full of arrows? I’m a horrible person.” But our ranger did end up joining “So this is what dead feels like?” club.
And, of course, we did more talking about the up coming Classic Deadlands campaign. We got about two sessions left in Kingmaker, kids.

Feb 202012
 

Well, we trounced the king of Pit Axe’s army and we started this session by trouncing him and his consort.
It was one of those quick and brutal fights. We literally caught him with his pants down. It was done and over with in a couple of rounds. We played around a bit in the castle and pretty much dispersed his mercenaries. It was nice touch sending the barbarians after the trolls. Seems like two problems took care of themselves.
We did a little planning and headed straight off towards the big bad of the whole adventure path, the nymph queen Nyrissa. OK, that was a bit of a mistake. But hell, we were feeling really cocky after blowing away the king. We stormed off into some alternate warped fairy tale dimension. And we got our butts stomped. I mean it was just a few crazy treants and some water elementals. How bad could it be?
Overconfidence and a complete lack of preparation can make the DM’s job so much easier. The bard scampered to safety and went invisible. While I got dropped to stone cold dead in a couple of rounds. Buffs and spells. Ha. I’ll just stand here and see if I can heal myself faster than these can dish our damage. Obviously, I was really unsuccessful with this tactic.
It was damned good and epic fight. And weren’t any near getting to the boss. So we retreated back to do some more planning and get that crazy half-orc resurrected.