Friday, July 28, 2017

Vaults of Vyzor, session #10

Roster

Brax of the Tallstones, savage human fighter (Brad Black)
Young John, 0-level Likely Lad (NPC hireling)
Yareh Falsong, mutant thief (Sam Mameli)
Gwalin Rustbritches, dwarf   (NPC hireling)
Merrill Meadows, fighter (Michael Julius)

Brax, Yareh, and Merrill emerge from today's expedition to the Verdant Vault dripping in orc blood from head to toe.  Even better, they bring out a treasure chest full of equal parts copper, silver, electrum, gold, and platinum coins!  Young John is only slightly splattered with orc blood, as he spent the entire session carrying the torch, avoiding combat.  Everybody doff their caps for a moment of silence, as Gwalin the Dwarf does not return from his trip below Castle Vyzor.  ("Good riddance!" mumble several dwarves nearby.  Why Gwalin was a pariah among his own kind will remain a mystery forever.)  Loaded with riches, the three heroes carouse mightily, blabbing all bout their adventure.

Using this well-known map of the first level of the Verdant Vault, they plan on making a straight push through to the stairs down near the southwest of the level as it is known.

Aside: I am loving the communal nature of the maps.  In my first Google+ campaign a fair number of people were tight-fisted with maps. There's plenty of treasure (and peril) to go around, so making maps publicly available seems like a great move to me.  It's like the adventurers are members of communal effort to plunder the Vaults.
One big, happy, larcenous family.

Anyway, I should've made a not about this next bit at the time, but I didn't.  One of the players suggested trying to recruit the Bargain Wolves to join their expedition.  Whoever said that should take a bow in the comments, because the reaction roll dice came up boxcars and the wolves helped the party out for a few encounters.


Apart from allying with the Bargain Wolves, the rest of the expedition was orcs, orcs, and more orcs.  The orc guard post was ravaged, after which the party used a secret door to launch a raid on the orc training facility.  Brax took pity on the teen-aged recruits, quaking in their boots at the sight of a flesh and blood opponent.  He ended up knocking out three of the poor kids before the majority of them ran in sheer terror.  The previously-encountered one-eyed orcish drill sergeant was brutally murdered for his trouble.

The routed recruits start pounding on a nearby door, begging for help from whoever was on the other side.  The party and the wolves split ways at this point.  The wolves stay and pick off the surviving recruits only to become embroiled in a fight with a crap-ton of veteran orc soldiers coming out of that door.  The party makes a judicious withdrawal and heads down the stairs to level 2 of the Verdant Vaults.  There they discover another big L-shaped 20' corridor similar to the one that dominated level one, though not quite as long.


In the one room they explore, past that crazy hall of oblique angles, they find five orcs who have just discovered a treasure chest concealed in a decorative pillar.  The party charges and what follows in one of the best low-level D&D fights I have seen in a long time.  Yes, there was a round or two where no one hit anybody else, but that only served to contrast the big cinematic things that happened the other rounds.  Merrill viciously critted two orcs in back-to-back rounds, spraying orc blood all over the room.  He will henceforth be known as Merill the Orcslayer.  Yareh injudiciously joined the melee at one point and was nearly slain by a mighty blow, but Brax heroically intervened, his shield splintering and his forearm taking the brunt of the blow.  Poor Gwalin fell here to a vicious orc warhammer blow to his face.  This was just one of those beautiful, chaotic fights that nicely demonstrates that you don't need a bunch of levels or feats for an encounter to be epic as shit.

Alas, our time was nearly up for the session.  I threw some rolls for wandering monsters, which came up nil.  The party caroused as mentioned.  Yareh blew her saving throw and awoke with a new tattoo on her back.  Something like this:


But with scrollwork around it labeling the piece "Brax the Bold."

The dotted line is the mysterious elevator shaft.


ONGOING ROLL OF THE DEAD

Gwalin Rustbritches (dwarf hireling)
Jarrod the Magic-User (Ian Reilly)
Jonesy (0-level NPC)
Little Liam Linkboy (0-level NPC)
Limpy the Naileteer (Jeff Call)
Engsal the Enchanter (Alex Joneth)
Elfbraham Lincoln (Jeff Call)
Littlens (0-level NPC)
Biggens (0-level NPC)
Stimpy (0-level NPC)
Ren (0-level NPC)

Rumour: A Lord and his minions intent on looting the Vaults have arrived.  They are now guests in the Azure Tower.