Monthly Archives: May 2016

5th Edition Spelljammer – Favors of the Arcane, Session 9

spelljammer logoThe journey to Greyhawk was a simple matter of flying to the Nyr Dyv, then sailing down the Silentan River to the docks. After pay what was almost certain an extortive docking fee, Sumner and Flint split off from Straxius, Veya, and Zinniana. The minotaur and dwarf would scour the High Market for trade goods and inquire at the Temple of Pelor for information regarding the Black Star while Straxius, Veya, and Zinniana sought out Ulfda the Mighty.

Although Sumner and Flint were unable to learn anything from the priests of Pelor, the others did find Ulfda the Mighty. They learned from the College of Magic where he lived (and that he definitely was not affiliated with the college). His tower was a tower only in the academic sense. It was round, with a pointed roof, but was obviously only two stories and towered over nothing. Also Ulfda himself seemed quite mad. He was obsessed with his finger bones and claimed Murlynd never returns what he borrows, though he couldn’t be sure if the spoon was actually his to begin with. He was willing to share some spells with Straxius, though. He just needed someone to retrieve his belongings from Murlynd’s house, especially his spoon, even though it might actually be Murlynd’s. He suggested they bring back ALL the spoons, just in case. And his finger bones. AND a jeweled brain box.

When asked how to get to Murlynd’s house, he produced a tarnished silver stirrup. Straxius quickly learned this was some sort of portal key, as it made the door exiting Ulfda’s tower lead not to the city street from whence they came, but rather some sort of plant-filled conservatory. They briefly thought about going while Sumner and Flint were running their errands, but decided to track them down first instead.

Murlynd's HouseOnce reunited with Flint and Sumner, the five officers of Boccob’s Barge passed through the portal into Murlynd’s House. From Conservatory, to Pantry, to Kitchen, to Sitting Room, they explored the odd home with trepidation, fearful of the wrath of a powerful wizard. They found a hot metal box and a cold metal box in the kitchen and surmised they were for cooking and food preservation, respectively. A collection of tiny colored pieces of paper were in the sitting room, along with glass frames containing pinned insects, as well as a talking clock! They gathered up every spoon they could find, but then found a note:

“Dear Folks,
So happy you were able to stop in during my absence. Please be careful not to disturb anything! Check to see that the plants and pets are being properly cared for—they should all be alive and healthy! Help yourselves to whatever you need to eat. Mind you don’t eat me out of house and home, though! The two scrolls might be of some small use to you in the adventures ahead. If you notice any other small objects you are in need of, help yourselves, but leave the silverware alone. If you should see Zagyg, do tell him that Keoghtom and I are waiting for Denkainen, who will be along soon enough. Have fun! Dr.M.”

Straxius immediately became suspicious: perhaps this mad Ulfda the Mighty was actually Zagyg in disguise! They contemplated the implications while enjoying a brief meal, then continued searching for the finger bones and jeweled brain box.

Nothing was found in the bedrooms, upstairs, so they proceeded to the attic. The clutter was prodigious and they discovered a baleful ghost in the attack. It gave Straxius a fright that greyed some of his hair before Sumner was able to banish it. Near where the ghost attacked was a trunk in which they found a few minor magical items, as well as blackened, gnarled finger bones and a jewel-encrusted skull.

After a quick examination, it was clear the finger bones were another piece of the Wand of Orcus. They skull appeared to be just an oddity. They reluctantly gathered up the bones, aghast that yet another component of the foul wand of a demon god was in their possession and decided to check the basement before returning to Ulfda.

In the basement, they found some more curiosities, such as lightning elemental that apparently provided power, and a tunnel that seemed to stretch for miles, but nothing else of note. They returned to the conservatory, made sure they had the stirrup in hand, and opened the door.

It led outside, to the grounds around Murlynd’s House, not back to the Free City of Greyhawk….

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5th Edition Spelljammer – Favors of the Arcane, session 8

spelljammer logoThe next morning, they were awoken by an alarm bell and shouts from the dwarves on overnight watch. The bugbears had returned in force. Half-a-dozen were assaulting the compounds walls and in the distance, two wyverns approached.

The officers of Boccob’s Barge donned their armor and joined the battle just as the wyvern with their riders arrived. Sumner noticed the wyverns carried cauldron or pots of some sort.

Straxius fired a hold monster at one of the wyverns, paralyzing it. It fell from the sky. The pot shattered, splashing it and its rider with the black pudding it carried.

They were not so lucky with the second wyvern, and it managed to drop its pot behind the wall, between the palisades and the building. The pudding oozed out and attacked the nearest dwarves fending off the bugbears scaling the wall.

From the central courtyard, Veya, Zinniana, and Dalshar fired arrows at the wyvern. The rest of the group divided their attacks between the bugbears, the black pudding, and the wyvern. They brought the wyvern down as it descended to engage Veya. By the time they killed the pudding, it had taken out three of the dwarves. The rest of the bugbears were easy to defeat by comparison.

Unfortunately, the pudding that devoured the wyvern and its rider outside the walls wasn’t quite finished, but was persuaded by judicious use of fire to seek prey in a different direction.

They retired inside to take stock of their wounds and decide their next move. Dalshar paid them the bounty she was offering for the second bulette on the island for helping defender her home. Outside, the earth shook and a terrible voice shouted: DALSHAR, YOUR TIME HAS COME!

She explained that old-timer spelljammers like herself often made powerful enemies, especially when they also explored the outer plains.

glabrezuA glabrezu kicked down the gate as Sumner and Straxius quickly came up with a plan. Sumner was made invisible and used fly to exit out the back. Unfortunately, the glabrezu saw him and attempted to dispel his magic. Straxius saved Sumner with a quick counter-spell. The dwarves, Kagark, and Veya engaged the demon in melee as the rest used missile weapons.

The demon attempted to confuse its attackers with a spell. Veya turned and attacked the dwarves. Meanwhile, the beast took a pummeling from the rest of the group.

Veya shook off the confusion before causing too much damage and Zinniana brought the demon down with an arrow to the face.

Once again taking stock of their wounds, Dalshar indicated her desire to march on the bugbears fort. Straxius and the rest of the officers of Boccob’s Barge decided they needed to be on their way. They inquired if there was anyone Dalshar knew who could help Straxius expand his arcane repertoire and she referred him to an acquaintance. She knew a wizard, who was last known to be in the Free City of Greyhawk, Ulfda the Mighty. He could help them, and also she wanted to know if they could pick up a load of steel for her?

They prepared to once again make way, a little stronger and a little wiser for their adventures.

So, this time, I made a concentrated effort to challenge them. Of course, the bugbear attack in the morning was planned since last session (we just didn’t get to it). I knew I’d been light on the challenge of fights previously; I was taking stock of their abilities and getting a feel for what they were capable of. Experience taught me that going by pure Party Level vs. CR tended to be really conservative due to the random nature of die rolls, and I was right. While the first fight took a lot of the PCs’ resources, none of them were actually injured by the time they defeated all the bugbears, wyverns, and puddings. Have NPC dwarves as damage sponges helped with that, I suppose. So too, went the fight with the glabrezu. Though they had leveled, they didn’t have a chance to get their new spells. Still, they defeated it with only the NPC Kagark (and some dwarves taking damage). They actually killed the glabrezu faster than I expected.

Of course, all this means that things get real from now on.Evil Raccoon soon

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