Monday, October 29, 2012

Era RPG Game Intro @ DriveThruRPG

In April 2012 my friend Gerardo Tasistro created UY RPG Publications, and now is launching a preview of its first creation, the Era RPG:

Click to download
"This booklet will introduce you to the basic mechanics and game play for Era in the Imperium setting.  Imperium is set in the world of Raakad.  A mixture of Greek and Roman cultures, crisscrossed by nomadic tribes, mystical forest creatures, elves, dwarves and foul orcs."

Now available for downloading at DriveThruRPG!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Hidden Temple of the Five - FLAILSNALS

Last week along with +Gerardo Tasistro, we took up +James Aulds offer to enter the "Hidden Temple of the Five" for a quick one shot. James wanted to test it before showing it to his group.

A mudslide on the side of a hill known as "The Pit Hill" which revealed a flight of steps going down into the depths. Morgan the Barbarian, Antii the Specialist and his follower Lutka the Fighter explored the place. I came with this map but seriuoslyI doubt it is accurate:

This was James' feedback after the session (my comments between brackets):

"general dunegeneering common sense, spiking doors, probing with poles (100xp)

using brazier boats and not becoming giant catfish food (100xp) [It was a cool idea I guess, and we were lucky in our rolls too.]

[Regarding the brazier boats Gerardo said later on a post: "I did not take my armor off while crossing an underground river on a bronze disk for a boat. I mean, my character was an INT 7 barbarian so OK, maybe I was playing character, but to be honest it didn't spring in my mind to warn the other player."]

defeating sake para elemental (375xp) [It rose from mouldy rice and water!]

gemstones (8) in 4 pairs (total 315 gp) [We found this in the garbage after killing the sake elemental.]
  • red pair (80gp)
  • green pair (70gp)
  • yellow pair (120gp)
  • small blue pair (45 gp)
trying to talk to/taunt a ghoul (10xp) [It emerged from one of five leather covered pits and after trying that, we fled. Luckly because there were five of them!]

fleeing bettles (25xp) [They were under the sand guarding six stone statues, and appeared when Antii went to try to put the gems back into the statues' eyes. He tried several times and when he failed. James said: "You know, they might not be magical gems..." :)]

burning the mold room (150xp)

totals 430xp for each player and 215 xp for the henchmen

yall were not really in much danger at anytime with your levels since i did it for a 1st level group but thank you for popping it open

the towns folk are raising a group to try to kill the five armed ghoul now, they will most likely meet the goblins that are being sent in after yall tomorrow night, and a catfish and some irritated beetles"

We had a great time and would definitely like to play with the guys again.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Familiar bags

This magic item is based on this article by Erik Tenkar. Art by Teo Tayobobayo.

The Familiar Bags, are a set of three tiny leather saddlebags with bronze buckles, the size of a small pouch, that can be strapped to the back of the spell caster's familiar. Each bag can hold 2 cubic feet or 10 pounds of material. In that way the caster can can store spell components, vials, potions or even coins and gems. 

A set of Familiar Bags weights 3 pounds and costs 1250 gold pieces.

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

No sympathy for the devil

Having drawn the Flames* from a Deck of Many Things at the Wampus Country campaign, Gimli went to the Stump-Witch to get some insight on the subject.

Stump-Witch: "I can see you've a devil's eye upon you, Gimli of Geoff. I can divine the devil's identity - although not a true name of power, of course - for a price. Will you exchange a favor for a favor, brave earth-kin?"

Gimli: "Sure, wise old lady. I swear on my clan's honor I'll fulfill your request if you provide me the identity of this devil and how can I defend myself from it."

Stump-Witch: "Listen closely, bearded one. The devil you have offended is quite implacable - you have had a hand in the destruction of his scaly lover, and, hearing of this, has placed a bounty upon your head. Many creatures of the various hells know your name and your scent, Gimli of Geoff. How best to defend yourself? I cannot say - perhaps you could seek out this devil and slay him, of course... but in the meantime, a show of force might dissuade those diabolic bounty-hunters, leaving you with but one devil's hatred. Surely that is a gain? Go with your elf-blooded companion [Sir the Fist of Uther] and sail upon dark and forgotten seas. There will you find the loose end of a string - the other end of which is held by he who would slay you. Hew close to kin to increase your chance of survival in the coming weeks, earth-blood."

"As my information was meager, so too my request. Gimli of Geoff, I charge you thus: find ye a good church or abbey, young and struggling, and aid it in some measurable way, even if it costs you personally. The path you tread in the coming nights is dark, and you must light torches along the way."

Gimli: "You've got a deal lady", and spits his hand and extends it to the witch.

The Stump-Witch has quite a grip - and a bit of a smirk.

Later in the HMS Apollyon, at a bar in Sterntown, Gimli came across a Sea Witch, with kelp for hair and a ragged shawl. He consulted her about the devil issue. The witch took a bag, shook it and dropped some fish bones on the table. After staring at the bones for a while she screamed "Seek the great Leviathan!", before running out of the place.

He looked forward to kill the bug-eyed Baatezu lord named Mhalchris, just to prove this devil that nobody messes with this dwarf, but the way the events unfolded prevented such encounter.

We'll see how this develops in the FLAILSNAILS universes...

* Flames (QC) Enmity between you and a devil.

Monday, October 08, 2012

Awesome FLAILSNAILS games (long post)

(Sept. 28th; GM: Reece Carter)

Kellan the illusionist, Garreth the fighter, Sir the cleric/fighter/magic-user and Verreck the wizard, we were exploring a cavern complex searching for Jolie Squarefoot's hydra. For some reason a barbarian king of the North wanted the lich's pet dead. For Gimli it all begun with him trapped up to shoulder level by ice at the bottom of a pit. Kellan used his magical kettle to pour hot water on and around the dwarf to melt the ice.

Once free Gimli climbed up a Rope of Climbing and the party continued exploring. The group came to a huge cavern full of dead bodies that came after us. Kellan used his Wand of Wonders, and almost all the cavern was engulfed with darkness. We quickly retreated and crossed the pit to make a stand. Various missiles and a rolling Flaming Sphere spell were enough to kill the undead. All of them bore in their tattered and burnt leather armors the symbol of the lich, a 7-point star.

Back in the big cavern the darkness was almost gone and we found an exit, and an altar with hydra heads. when the darkness disappeared, it revealed the rests of an hydra chained to a pillar in the middle of the cavern. I don't know if it animated when the altar was disturbed or when someone got too near. The thing is that it begun biting and shooting ice rays. Kellan used again his wand with various results, being the best a giant frog double force gust of wind that dropped a stalactite on the hydra, impaling it. Garreth, Sir and Gimli (who drank a Potion of Speed) closed to attack, while Verreck cast spells summoned a giant frog. Even if some heads grew back we managed to defeat the undead beast, and return to the barbarian king to claim our reward.

Wampus Country
(Oct. 5th; GM: Erik Jensen)

"During a break in the action between delves to Crumbledown, two of the usual suspects - the Rat-Bastards Ornibus and Abel - entertain several visitors to Wampus Country by means of a picturesque picnic on a hillside. Very quickly, Abel asks if the newcomers want to see what he has in his pocket - a deck of many things .

Elsjinn, egged on by Sir the Fist, draws a single card, the Comet , and she feels her potential short-term destiny shift. Not to be outdone, Sir the Fist draws two cards - the Gem followed by the Moon . Jewelry tumbles out of nothingness, which he quickly collects (save the bits stolen by Elsjinn and her chipmunk); further, Sir the Fist has a wish to make - and soon, before it expires.

[Gimli did indeed pull from the deck the Flames and earned the enmity of the devil. Gimli later talked to the Stump-Witch about that, but that's on another post.]

While chuckling over their good fortune regarding the deck , the picnickers are startled by a monstrous roar, and a forty-foot rooster lumbers over the horizon, headed for the sleepy frontier town of Thistlemarch (which the Rat-Bastards call home at the moment). Concerned that the giant chanticleer might destroy the town, the adventurers spring into action, attempting to steer the beast by frightening it, and warning the townsfolk.

In the end, Elsjinn uses her ability to speak with animals to convince the rooster to steer clear of the town and return to the picnic, where it is fed stalks of corn and some magically-enhanced grasshoppers. Yet that feast is insufficient, for the rooster has many wives who also require sustenance. Calling up on the powers of the Serpent God Sethet, Reverend Jones also speaks with animals and warns the rooster that Ornibus' brother-snakes may be en route. Panicked, the rooster runs back to its home farm - with the adventurers in hot pursuit.

Back at the farm - belonging to Ernie Pyewackett, the guy who trains goats - the view is dominated by a half-dozen thirty-foot hens. Our heroes witness I giant hungry hen swallow a horse in a single peck. Abel uses hypnosis to calm the hens while Ornibus commands the rooster to sleep; Gimli checks on the frightened farmer and assists him in gathering flammables for a potential terminal barbecue.

Meanwhile, Sir the Fist investigates the intact chicken-coop, and finds that the seed corn in the trough has been magically altered, perhaps by someone pouring a potion of some sort overtop of it. Obviously, in such a situation, the right thing for a cleric of the God of Magic to do is to eat the rest of the corn as quickly as possible in hopes of becoming a giant.

Growing to a good thirty-five foot height, the now-naked Sir the Fist suggests using the black lotus powder in his kit to put all the chickens to sleep; through the use of some euphoric mushrooms to gather the hens together, and a potion of flying so Gimli can bomb them from above, this is accomplished, and all the giant chickens are subdued.

There is, however, one problem. Thanks to his detect magic spell, Sir the Fist can see that there is still a transformative process going on inside the chickens - just as there is within himself. He uproots a tree and crushes the heads of the hens, lest they grow larger or wake; simultaneously, Elsjinn steps into the rooster's beak and drives a weapon into its brainpan. The flesh beneath the feathers is roiling and bubbling even though the rooster is dead, and in mere moments the rooster explodes in a poultrytechnic display which scatters raw chicken meat across the barnyard; thankfully, Elsjinn tumbles to safety.

The hens, of course, are due to blow, so the adventurers hide in and behind the barn, and soon six giant chickens explode in sequence like a string of Chinese firecrackers; it takes several minutes for all the chicken chunks to come to earth, but when the thunderous sound of wet slapping noises ends, our heroes are hale and hearty. Or are they? It quickly dawns on Sir the Fist that he will be the next to explode in due time...

The adventurers high-tail it to the Stump-Witch, who has previously assisted Ornibus with curse removal (see also: The Platypus Incident). Sir the Fist trades a book of necromancy from the HMS Apollyon to the Stump-Witch in exchange for the cure, and he shrinks back down to normal size without exploding. He then utters the wish he gained from the deck and summons to his side a flying carpet."

Gimli took 10 iron rations of "barbecue chicken pemmican" for free from Mr. Pyewackett, and also bought a guard-goats. They were on a 50% discount for those who saved his life, just 15 gp! They have stats as a guard dog. Read more about the guard goats here.

Castle Amber (X2)
(Oct. 6th; GM: Shawn Sanford )

Sol, Noggin Threeteeth, Gustav the Beligerant, Sir the Fist, Grimepaw, Kellan and Gimli had all but one artifact, a mirror, needed to find the tomb of the lost Amber. They needed to take out a magic user and his 100' tall flesh golem and the village magistrates would give it to the group. A magic powder must be sniffed by the golem in order to be defeated. Five doses of this were given to the group. With his flying carpet and  spyglass Sir the Fist quickly spotted the creature, and along with Noggin they flew to intercept it. The rest followed on horse at a safe distance.

In his first pass Sir the Fist managed to hit the golem square in the face, and it collapsed to the ground. From a basket that was hanging from the golem's back emerged the magic user who threw some Magic Missiles to the attackers. Meanwhile Sol and Gimli charged at the wizard, who promptly fell dead. Back in the village the last artifact was given to the group along with a 10.000 gp reward..

The ring touched the mirror and melted into it, the potion was poured on the blade of the sword which absorbed it, and finally the sword hit the mirror, and both artifacts exploded into pieces. An amber mist surrounded the party and when it dissipated, they were in front of a roughly square construction of amber wit no other entrances that a huge pair of doors inlaid with the crest of a phoenix and a crown.

Grimclaw cast Prayer, while Sol and Gimli pushed the doors inwards and in the middle of a very large room, and a blueish reptilian figure could be seen laying atop a pile of silver and gems. The first bolt of lightning  hit Gustav the Beligerant right in the chest almost killing him. Noggin tried to hide in the shadows. Gimli gave him a Potion of Extra Healing before closing into melee. Kellan cast Mirror Image on himself. Sol and Sir charged. The combined attacks of the group were no match to the wyrm, whose head was chopped by Gimli, honoring his nickname: "The Dragonslayer".

Continuing the exploration of the tomb the group found several rooms matching the Elements of Nature: a room with fiery walls and embers on the floor, a room with stone walls and mud on the floor and a vast room  with a trail of clouds. In this last one, Sir and Noggin flew in on the carpet to explore. The were soon attacked by a wyvern that managed to hit Noggin with its sting. The poor thief failed his save vs. poison and begun slowly to die, convulsing. Sir was also hit, but managed to resist the effects. He evaded more attacks and flew near the entrance where the rest threw missiles and spells at the flying creature killing it. After joining the group, Kellan gave Noggin to drink an Elixir of Life, stealing the thief from the grasp of Death.

HMS Apollyon 
(Oct. 7th.; Gustie LaRieu)

"The above brave flailsnails took a dubious commission from the Monastic ancient technology hoarding marines of the HMS Apollyon, to "deal" with a troublesome Batezu lord named Mhalchris. After trying to sneak into the back of the monster's domain to deliver a letter, and being singed by a set of exploding runes - the band decided to meet with the bug eyed devil and his court of bug eyed diabolical friends. Refusing the Devil's drinks the party discovered that a threatened "storming" of Sterntown was only an alternative to fulfilling the terms of a contract Mhalchris made with one of the passenger class families. The only way to meet the contract was to bring the last surviving member of the Haldivar family. The scion proved to be a small bug eyed child, rotting away guarded by an elderly servant and several large constructs that cracked with electricity. Despite the boy's good manners the band discover he was a terrible bloodthirsty twit and his caretaker open to bribery. They took the boy back to Mhalcris and were only somewhat surprised that the child was his own grandson and that the Devil wanted him out of family loyalty to protect the boy from the enemies that had wiped out the rest of his family."

Gimli got this Black Onyx Band, which is in act a Ring of Protection from Earth (20 Charges). The ring keeps Earth Elementals and such from attacking up. Expend one charge to drive an Earth Elemental off as if with a fear spell (they get a save). Spend charges of 1 per HD of elemental to dominate and control an Earth Elemental for 1 year (it also gets a save).

Wednesday, October 03, 2012


Nikola-T is my character in the Anomalous Subsurface Environment (ASE-1) campaign run by David Williams via G+ hangout. 

Nikola is a scientist, a new class from the Henchmen Abuse blog that you can see here, that has chosen Wired Reflexes (+1 Dex) as his first Scientist Power and Enhancement. He lives in the city-state of Denethix, that is ruled by  Feretha (a somewhat indifferent, and quite reclusive, insane wizard tyrant). It's a relatively good place to live anyway.

He forms part of the occasional salvage parties that scour the land, trying to reclaim ancient artifacts and books. Also, of caravans that sometimes travel to the coast to gather salt, which is a scarce and expensive commodity.

He belongs to the Cult of Science, that believes Science as a literal god, one who performs miracles through formal physical processes. That is why he has his clothes dyed white, the color of the cult. As protection he wears a flak jacket also dyed white and carries a knife.

STR 12, DEX 13, CON 12, INT 12, WIS 12, CHA 9

Tuesday, October 02, 2012