Direbane is an abode to share artifacts, simulacra, histories, and other items of note related to ongoing years adventuring.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

A Dark and Stormy Knight...

Given that snake-mystic and her dog-naga vanished almost as suddenly as she appeared, it was perhaps not unreasonable drow priestess and posse off away in hover ship. However, the ship unexpectedly bore east rather than southwest to suspected drow enclave.

Our heroes followed the drow hover ship's path as a steady rain began to fall. After a full day's march west, and needing to rest for health and spells, adventurers pitched a cramped tent for the night, setting order of the watch. During half-orc barbarian's turn hearing soft thud, three winged monkeys peering in... with Medusa heads!

Flying Medusa Monkeys

These beasts and four more of their brethren violently attacked wielding glowing, magical scimitars and a horrific stoning ability (barbarian within hair of petrification), but elfin thief-wizard's fireball succinctly repels - unfortunately destroying party's only shelter from the storm.

Thief-wizard envisions terrific plan, reducing the barbarian to fine-size, where man-with-no-name can send barbarian aloft with arrow from his longbow. 500' above the treetops barbarian can spy for signs of light... civilization... then gently to earth by way of feather fall ring..

Plan comes to fruition with barbarian sighting ten miles east a bright glowing fire-light above the treetops - perchance a tower in the forest! Also barbarian see'd against the moonslight masses more flying Medusa monkeys scattering toward the east.

Barbarian's view from an arrow
Man-with-no-name experiences consternation realizing path of the hover ship led nearly back to where they escaped Orcus merely a day prior, two miles south of said dungeon. They had backtracked as far as their prior day's traveling!

Being without shelter from rain for thief-mage to study, and as barbarian peeked some low lying sharpened hills directly south, the band ventured there hoping for some craggy overhang shield to the elements. Striking through the night up wooded hills to promising outcrop, mesmerizing bird-song echoed unil suddenly the trees above reveal evil half-bird enchanters!

Harpy Archer
Three harpy's challenge using frosty bow-shots from above, but gradually succumb to thief-mage's fireball's, blasters from Paladin and reptile-priest, and return arrow volleys from man-with-no-name. Resulting damage required more urgent rest even than spells, so group sleeps rest of night and half-day 'neath the stony crag.

Reptile-priest's search for the harpy's nest found naught, they march through afternoon sun twelve miles in the direction of lit tower from night afore. Along way strange dwarf in crystal armor and fiery elfin hybrid join yet again the party. And fiery elf drifts up above forest tress to inspect if tower is visible. Lo, while fiery elf does spot a tower-like apparition, he also takes note of many, many flying Medusa monkeys circling the construct in clockwise pattern out about 300 yards radius.

Moving closer, the now-larger assembly saw arrayed out about the purported tower, a number of metal men, motionless at attention bearing blasters and swords.

Metal Men
As adventurers debate, metal men attack with blasters. Crystal dwarf charges lancing the metal men as he passes, where spell casters pepper with fireballs and ranged fighters with tech blasters. As the metal men are destroyed each self-disrupts in a 60' diameter concussive force which wounds crystal dwarf nearby. Gradually metal men in the vicinity are defeated, but adventurers expect more soon at hand, and what of Medusa monkeys overhead...?


Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Cyberhell...

http://www.dundracon.com/
DunDraCon Game #102 - Cyberhell
Friday, February 17, at 6 PM in 163 for 8 hours, Room Map
GM: Matrox Lusch
System: Dungeons & Dragons 1st/3rd Hybrid
Players: 8, Players provide their own characters
Power Level: 10th-15th
Variations: Will accomidate 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th Ed chars
Rules Knowledge: Useful
Game Content: Mainstream

Sigil, center of the Multiverse, has vanished.
The Astral Plane has become Evil-aligned and corrosive, literally dissolving the Mutiverse where connections open at points in Outer Planes or Prime Material. Rumors abound the Arch-Fiend Lucifer, Prince of Darkness and Evil, is free from his icy, Inferno prison.
A band of heroes magically appears before an odd-looking, robed person who whispers,

'You must go DIRECTLY to Hell...'

       Cyberhell is inspired and skinned over portions of Geoffry O. Dale's 'Journey through Malebolge' which is, in turn, Dale's modern imagining of his old 1980 Judges Guild product, 'Inferno' - believed deadlier even than the original 'Tomb of Horrors!' My 'skin' of Cyberhell is loosely based on a home brewed scenario from the mid-1990s by my good friend Sick Rick and his pal Deangul Bunsen Burner.
       I will run the adventure with my own blended 1e/3e hybrid rules which, in general, utilizes d6 'party' initiative, and de-emphesizes skill checks in favor of race and class abilities. Otherwise, the saving throws, magic, and combat rules are essentially 3rd/3.5 edition.
       There is no need to update your character sheet into a new rules version. In this game I'll mostly translate where necessary on the fly into my hybrid rules. However, I will accommodate 3rd Ed. and 5th Ed. skills where appropriate, as well as potential 1st/2nd Ed. saving throws and abilities. The goal being to give adventurers best possible chances versus an EXTREMELY deadly environment. 
       Situationally, if you can pull an imaginative idea from any set of rules that might save the party, we'll roll with it!
       That said, please make sure yours is a high-level character you yourself have run, from 1st level to whatever. It may be that the character has collected dust, but we'd like as least some memories as to the limits of what your character can do existing somewhere in the old noggin.
       Also, please bring whatever rule books you use to run your character including Players Handbook and DM's Guide. I will bring my old 1st Ed. AD&D books, my 1e/3.5 Hybrid rules, and the 5th Ed. Basic Rules for my own reference.
       Lastly, please bring your own set of dice. A character miniature would be cool, but not required.

Monday, December 26, 2016

1991 Mystery Map


Some of the joy I've been having re-running my home game through the Lands of Krull once again is having an opportunity to flesh out or re-develop ideas and scenarios that were incomplete or poorly thought out.

A major thorn is what in heck I was trying to run for our first camping trip up Mount Diablo one weekend in August, 1991. I do know I was wasted after drinking beer for about 4 hours straight before we even started the game. Also, I was winging it most of that night - very ill-prepared compounded by intoxication. But I do have clear in my mind what the huge Dwarven stronghold was supposed to look like with 3 tiers of walls, each built upwards from the wall in front of it, and the large, domed keep on top with no visible doors or windows.

There was something to do with a mace or maces and dragons. However, the most interesting thing I discovered when I edited the raw video from this session is that I had an OVERLAND MAP!

None of my hand-drawn maps that I can find show that island off the south coast (I know it's the south coast because my place names run west to east across my maps). I can tell from the video that the map is incomplete, maybe a third at most. The cool thing is that it should show the location of the Dwarven stronghold.

Now, it doesn't appear that this map aligns with my two Krull maps. I have a vague recollection charting an adjoining map to my personal interpretation of the Lands of Arduin, but this section does not seem to attach up to the east side of that map. The map is definitely my style of cartography.

Anyhow, it's a mystery. I will continue searching through my game stuff. There is a possibility I used the other side for a different map, or gave the map to another DM from our Blipping Game to draw their map. Grrrrrr...

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Cyberhell at DunDraCon

My submission for this year's DunDraCon is a re-imagination of Sick Rick and Dingul's old "Cyberhell" over Geoffrey O. Dale's new "Journey to Malebolge" based on the hell of Dale's 1980 "Inferno" and the source Dante version.

Malebolge is a huge, high-level sandbox. The Cyberhell "skin" focuses this sandbox down to a manageable series of deadly encounters. I am still including elements that demonstrate to vast terrain of Malebolge, but the party's mission should provide a pull in a certain direction.




Tuesday, December 13, 2016

1st Episode of an Original Campaign Video from 1991

Mic'ed D&D. Ha, there is so much going on at these games that is left on the cutting room floor for a variety of reasons. Just let it be said that this particular game at Sick Rick's in Santa Rosa was EPIC in the annals of our band of heroes.

As per usual, the system is 1st edition AD&D. J.A.S. typically runs his game tournament-style requiring spell details to be written down rather than looked up in books when cast. You might notice our Barbarian-Techno, Grady, is being run by someone new. Grady was basically our traveling NPC who pretty much was turned over to anyone who wanted to join up and didn't have a character. We actually still use Grady today in our game, one of the last remnants of this bygone age...

Sunday, December 11, 2016

9th and Final Episode from 1990 Game Session

We conclude after about a 10-hour game session. Looks like Spacin' Jason crashed shortly after midnight (it was his apartment and visiting girlfriend); Dr. John departed after the 2am beer run (was sober enough to drive home and on beer run); Matrox and Postman Bob both slept during the game's latter moments. Other than that our DMs Sick Rick and Dingul, and players J.A.S., Summerled, Greg, and Shade Structure were all up for the duration.

The adventure created by Sick Rick and Dingul was actually very interesting. Ha, even the parrot. I really enjoyed what was done with the desert and Glass Sea, and had completely forgot about the Thri-Kreen. Of course, by the wee wee hours of the morning there is not a lot of deep thought, but our DMs seemed well-prepared.

Note that this recorded session was not the concluding session for Sick Rick's and Dingul's adventure. Our DM rotation was 2 sessions for a single DM or 3 sessions for two co-DMs, so this game had one more night to go which occurred the following late spring or early summer (alas, no video).

Now I want to see if I can clear up some holes the video left in the scenario. Mainly, what happened with Orcus?

Saturday, December 10, 2016

8th Episode from 1990 Game Session

Moving to the conclusion, a final beer run takes place (off-screen) during this episode so the hour is after 2:00am - approaching 4:00am toward the end of this excerpt.

While the adventuring party does not seem to have found time and/or a place to rest, players (myself included) are dropping out for naps here and there. Ha, we woke folks (especially those who played clerics) when we needed them.