Sunday, January 29, 2012

Qualinost and Sla-Mori (with the not-so-big kids)

Back at the campaign with the kids last week. We covered a LOT of ground!

After the Ambush of the Slave Caravan, the heroes gathered their equipment and fled into the woods with the Elves. Through the night they were pursued by Orcs and Goblins and Draconians. By morning (of Day 11) their pursuers had given up or had been picked off by Elves that had laid behind in ambush.

They marched on through the day and and made camp at a great waterfall. The next day (Day12) took them to the Elvish capitol of Qualinost where they met the Speaker of the Suns. They spent the rest of the day recovering and healing.

The next day (Day13) They met again with the Speaker of the Suns in a great council and were charged with going to Pax Tharkas to free the prisoners and create a distraction by leading the dragons armies off in a wild goose chase after them, to give the Elves some time to pack up and flee Qualinost!?

The following day (Day14) they headed off on their quest. Along the way they came across the scene of a recent battle and were ambushed by some Draconians!

The Draconians were quickly dispatched. Among the dead they found a sole survivor who decided to tag along with the group.

In the late afternoon they came to the valley leading to Pax tharkas and as they looked on a massive Dragon Army marched out from it’s gates. After the army had passed they snuck past the valley and into the next vale following an old stream up to the hidden entrance – The Sla Mori or “Secret Way”. Entering under cover of night they decided to camp out just within the entrance.

The next day (Day 15) they delved deep into the mountainside. Whenthey came to the first crossroads there was some dissent among some of the group as to which way to go. In the end most decided to head on straight into the mountain, but Christopher insisted that Gilthanas would want to go the other way and so the group was split. AS it was only one character (and an NPC) I decided to just take Gilthanas and they rest of the group went on without him.

They entered the tomb of Kith-Kanan and found his ancient blade: Wyrmslayer. Christopher quickly snatched that up for Sturm Brightblade, but I thought afterwards I probably should not let Sturm have the sword – he is a Knight of Solamnia, not a Grave Robber. He would not raid the tombs of the honoured dead and steal their sacred swords!

Passing through the corridor that led out of the room they entered a hall that was blocked with rubble – the far end of the hall had collapsed long ago. Before they could investigate and see if they could find a way through they were attacked by


This was pretty quickly taken care of and we called it a day.

This week Bruce and his kids were at book club so Christopher came over and we played a separate Savage Worlds game (which I will chronicle as some point) and played a bit of Hordes of the Things. Hopefully next week we’ll be back to our Dragonlance Saga!

Pax Tharkas (with the BIG kids)

Whoops. I’ve slacked off a little updating the Dragonlance Campaigns. Here are the last two session of the big kids Saturday Night game…

Getting later into the afternoon (of Day 22… still…) our heroes retreated back to the “Chain Room”, having battled Draconians and saved the captive Elven Princess in our Previous Encounter

They ate some supper and awaited the return of the Kender – after an hour or so they heard some orcs and goblins heading down the passage towards them, evidently having come across the signs of the struggle and tracked them back to the Chain Room.

Riverwind rushed to the door, perhaps to block them from pouring into the room. Unfortunately not one went with him… so the orcs did pour into the room and quickly surrounded Riverwind.

It was quite the long, pitched battle, but I think it ended with Only Riverwind being seriously wounded (3 wounds!) and most of those, if I recall correctly, were from friendly fire into close combat!?

Afterwards Goldmoon, who’s starting to get the hang of the whole healing thing, healed him up pretty good (removing tow of three wounds). Princess Laurana and maybe Norfindel were also wounded, but survived and were given some quick first aid and set straight right away!

And that was Session 12… The battle took a while… we started late… and ended early…

This week our heroes left a note for the Kender should he ever return that way and forged ahead. They returned to the Guard Room where they had rescued Princess Laurana. They ahd a look out the two different doors leading out of the room and found dark hallways leading out of both.

Princess Laurana was able to lead them to the prison area where all the women were being kept. Henry FitzArnulf, actually being played by Christian for the first time in over a month and a half, stood guard at the Guard Room while others went off to rescue the women. While they were healing one of the prisoners and rying to make plans for getting them out a group of Draconians blundered into the Guard Room


Henry charge the Draconians! Others followed – through their quick and decisive action, they were actually able to stop the two who had run off to get help before they made it to the stairs!

Afterwards I sent everyone upstairs for a bit so I could sort out what exactly The Kender was up to… I’ll have to fill you in on that later, lest my players sort out what’s going on…

Anyway, The rest of the women folk were freed but it was discovered that the children were being held hostage under the careful eye of an ancient red dragon! The men were being held elsewhere as well and were being forced to work as slaves in the mines… while they were plotting and preparing to head out the entire fortress became to shake as thought it was all about to collapse. Many were thrown to the ground and the trembling went on for half a minute. When it stopped all was deadly quite.

The silence was broken by someone wondering aloud “What did the Kender DO!?”

(If only they knew….)

Guessing that stealth and secrecy was no longer an option they formed ranks and, after making a quick check of the other rooms on this level of the dungeon, started climbing the stairs to the level above where it was clear complete chaos and pandemonium reigned!

We called it a night at that point because this was a bit of a departure from how I think it was imagined the module would play out – though, I think, not all that different from the books…. And I need some time to sort out where all the denizens of the fortress are at and what they would be up to at the moment….

Hopefully we will be forging ahead next week and finishing this part of the adventure!!!

I can’t believe how many sessions I’m getting out of each of these modules. WE started in September and still haven’t finished the second (of TWELVE!) modules in the campaign!?

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Zombies in Stalingrad

Once again we did not have quorum for our regular ongoing Dragonlance Campaign so I quickly set up another East Front WWW2 game.

Stalingrad, October 1942


A few weeks after our heroes Last Mission a report came to the BPO Stalingrad HQ that a unit of Russians had been attacked by another unit of Russians which had advanced out of the German lines – they did not carry weapons and all attempts to communicate with them were ignored – they fell upon the soviets holding the line and savaged them in brutal hand to hand fighting. Pandemonium ensued. An entire regiment of artillery was tasked to level the area just to get the situation under control. The BPO commander suspected paranormal involvement and the team to the front to investigate.

There they waited a few days until they got a report that a forward observation post had spotted what seemed to be a large number of Russians gathering just beyond the german lines.

The team moved to the front….


Soviet Forces

Leytenant Anya Putyatin – BPO Psionik
Serzhant Boris Trotsky
Rayadovoy Ioseph Dizaleski - BPO Sniper

7x Soviet Riflemen
3x Soviet HMG crew (with Maxim HMG)

German Forces

1x SS Bloodmage
4xVeteran SS Minders
27 x Reanimated Russians

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

Amanda (Leytenant Anya Putyatin) and Dave (Serzhant Boris Trotsky)

Patrick (Rayadovoy Ioseph Dizaleski) brought his own hat.

Soviets preparing to hold the line…

Darkness fell….

…and out of the darkness loomed…

The Zombie Horde!!

Slowly they shambled towards the soviet line. The soviets fired buckets of bullets at them – but with very little effect!?

(at this point the players were getting VERY nervous and making comments about how they’d really enjoyed playing these characters and that I wasn’t being very nice….)

During the five or so turns to advance to the Soviet lines the two machineguns, six riflemen, sniper rifle, submachinegun and BPO Psionik only managed to drop three zombies.

The HMG team was the first to be overrun – despite hundreds of bullets being shot downrange they hadn’t caused a single casualty with their fire. On their first turn of close combat the team leader bashed in one of the zombies head with the butt end of his SMG and it reeled back and crumpled to the ground.

In following turns the two gunners would beat a number of them to death with their bare hands!?

Zombies continue to shamble forward – and who is that skulking behind them?! An SS Blood Mage and his minders (bodyguards, yes, but also there to kill him if it seemed capture was immanent).

These two riflemen beat one zombie down with the butt ends of their rifles and were feeling so confident they rushed out to beat on some others that were separated from another group before they could converge and overwhelm them.

Rayadovoy Ioseph Dizaleski had started dropping zombies like crazy when they came out of the shadows and tried to cross the street in front of the building, but eventually his position was overrun… well with one zombie. After the first one got through, BPO Psionik Anya Putyatin turned her attention there and started melting zombie brains with her mind…

AT the other end of the line one zombie had stumbled into the wire and became entangled, but others behind him simply crawled over top of him…

The MG team holding the gap in the wall, holding off the three or four times their number.

The pile of zombies outside Dizaleski’s hide. There was some debate as to who was responsible for the pile. Dizaleski claims he shot them all point blank as they rushed out of the shadows and across the street. Trotsky, however, had also spend turns (and entire drums of ammo!) blazing away down that street and thus claimed he was responsible for the majority of them. Truthfully had they been examined more closely a number of them would have had no sign of gunshot wounds at all but rather looked like their heads exploded from within or had simple melted…

Another pile of corpses mounts in front of the MG position – mostly due to the gunners fists!

I missed getting a shot of him while he was down – but the team leader of the MG team was wounded and knocked down, but Leynant Putyatin rushed to his aid and got him back on his feet and into the game again! (lets hear if for the Combat Medic edge! HIP! HIP….!?)

(bah, my first kill of the game and I didn’t even get to reanimate it! Fie! FIIIIIEEEE!)

A Zombie crawling over the other zombie caught in the wire finally gets over and attacks the rifleman beyond.

The riflemen who had earlier rushed out from their position being overwhelmed as the SS Blood Mage strolls on by – expecting there to be a number of fresh Russian corpses to animate at this position soon enough.

More of a mess in the center.

Another Russian is finally overwhelmed – his comrade fled and leapt over the wall!

The Blood Mages first victim – REANIMATED! Unfortunately no one else was around to witness is so no guts checks…

His comrade didn’t last long… From his position behind that wall he tried to fire on the Blood Mage – but the minders were on hold and interrupted. They tied their opposed agility rolls and thus went simultaneously. The Russian went down in a hail of submachinegun fire…

…but not before he shot one of the SS minders!

Another zombie over the wire while four flank through the building to the side.

Trotsky decided to run and help out his sniper (not having any more zombies to shoot out in the street). The two of them finally beat down the last two remaining zombies at their end of the line.

Mopping up in the middle.

The SS saw that it was lost and scarpered, but not before…

… they raised one last zombie and sent it on it’s merry way towards the soviet lines. It almost made it to Anya Putyatin – who had advanced a little too far into the “no man’s land” beyond the soviet lines.

Wow… from certain doom to total victory. The Soviet only lost two dead – another had been only slightly wounded and returned to the fight with the aid of Anya Putyatin. The SS lost one of their minders – who turned out to be only wounded and was captured by the BPO. The Germans had started with 27 zombies (and animated two more Russians along the way) and they were all beaten down – mostly with fists and rifle butts…

Afterwards, Serzhant Boris Trotsky successfully persuaded his superiors to have the riflemen holding this position to be transferred to the BPO (and replace the rifle squad he’d lost in his last action….).

Fun times!

Coming Soon to Savage Timmy’s Playhouse:

Well, with any luck, next week we’ll be back to our regularly scheduled Dragonlance Campaign… Assuming we can get quorum!?

Saturday, January 14, 2012

More Sla-Mori

By the afternoon (of Day 22) our heroes had finished cleaning off zombie goo from the Previous Encounter and were ready to forge ahead…

They trundled through one hall and some of them fell into a trap and twisted ankles and stuff. Undaunted and not-quite-dead they carried on and found a room with a BIGASS chain rising up and out of sight through a tight hole in the ceiling high above. The Kender figured he could fit up there and decided to climb up and see what he could find.

Realizing the Kender was not coming back anytime soon some of the others forged ahead down the corridor, effectively splitting the party.

I hate it when that happens… It’s one thing when a character are going to scout ahead briefly and everyone else is going to stay put and wait until they return – but it’s something completely different when one group goes one way and another goes another with no clear plan as to how they’re supposed to meet up again. For one it means some players have to sit and twiddle their thumbs for great periods of time while others play out what their characters are doing. Another difficulty is how far ahead do you let one group delve before returning to the others. Further – how do you deal with information? If everyone’s sitting there listening and hearing all the stuff that they other group or individuals are doing , do you trust them no to act on information they hear that their characters would not have any clue about – it’s hard…

Previously (like, years ago) I would send the people not with an individual group into another room… Then I got sick of that because the group was ALWAYS splitting up and getting into separate fights in separate areas and some evenings some players wouldn’t get to play at all – and I essentially told them not to split up anymore…

I guess I could give them disincentives to do so – increase the likelihood of random encounters/wandering monsters and beat them down when they do.

Anyway the group that scouted ahead down below found their way into a cellar and then into a guard room

In the guard room they confronted a few draconian guards and freed Princess Laurana…

(Here I lowered the number of guards… should have kept it at the suggested number and beat them all to a pulp, took away all their stuff, and forced the others to now rescue them in addition to carrying out the mission… except now having to do it with less than half their number… and with the entire fortress aware of their presence – a totally impossible task – do I want to end the campaign in module two – of the twelve that I have successfully tracked down over the last year!?)

The Kender (Roscoe Thorngage) climbed waaaay up in the fortress and snuck around and found out some stuff (here I did kick all the other players out of the room).

Not sure if the game is going on tonight only two have confirmed their attendance, two are definitely not coming, the other two I haven’t heard from (but haven’t been showing up regularly so I generally assume that they won’t be here…).

Kids Savage Worlds DargonLance Campaign Update

I’ve been remiss in updating these campaign sessions… so here is a quick update of the last three sessions:


In Session 9, after about three months of playing we found ourselves at the afternoon at the fourth day after the adventure began… Oi!? Anyway… They found and confronted the dragon!

Bursting into the Dragon’s Lair! Huzzah!

No messing about – they charged in and tried to do battle (not realizing the utter hoplesness of doing so)

As per the adventure plot Goldmoon (at the bidding of Mishakels ethereal voice) strode forth and struck the dragon with the Blue Crystal Staff and they both disappeared in flash of blinding light.

I took a picture of it… it was a damage roll… I can’t remember exactly what it was for… I think it was for Sturm Brightblade, who was hit by a falling stone as the cavern began to collapse around them. I said he was buried under a pile of stone – to prevent them from trying to save his very dead butt (following the suggestion of “obscure deaths” written right into the book). Sturm has been a favourite of Finnegan’s and a few tears were shed… but I tried to keep things moving along…

They decided to try and take the “elevator” back up but found a few draconians at the base and had to fight them amidst the falling rocks…

They eventually made it up and found Goldmoon AND Sturm at the base of Mishakels statue in the temple above! Huzzah! Everyone escaped before the whole mess burned down, fell over, and sank into the swamp creating some very good foundations for further construction, methinks!)

BACK TO SOLACE (one way or another...)

In Session 10 the group hiked out of the swamp and over the hills and started to make their way back across the plains toward Solace. The passed the ruins of Que-Shu and debated whether to carry on to Solace or follow the tracks heading south. Eventually it was decided to head to Solace first.

At Que-Kiri, along the way, they ran into some trouble…

They ran into a new kind of draconian (that melted into a puddle of acid when they were killed) and were beaten down quite fiercely and ultimately captured. They were chucked into a cage on the back of a wagon and hauled over the pass to Solace – which they found to be in utter ruins!


In Session 11 we were joined by our neighbors - Shawn and his son Christopher (who have also decided to start homeschooling). Shawn took over playing Riverwind, and Christopher took over playing Sturm Brightblade. Finnegan is still playing Flint Fireforge, Keira is still playing Tasslehoff, V. is still playing Tanis and Caramon, C. is still playing Goldmoon, but also took on playing Tika Waylan (Who was also thrown into the cage with them when they reached Solace), and Bruce is still playing Raistlin.

Everyone was in a pretty bad way – from the beat down in the previous session. So I made the caravan go a bit slower than suggested in the book (which was probably a more realistic speed for traveling though mountain passes!) to give Goldmoon a few days to try and heal people up.

As the caravan passed by the Qualinesti Wood they were ambushed by Elves!

This was a bit of an epic battle and we ended up running out of time before the battle was truly concluded… but in the end good triumphed over evil and our heroes escaped into the woods with the Elves. Huzzah!

This week we were to forge ahead, but Bruce and co. never showed. So I started a new side-campaign for Christopher, Finnegan and Keira – more on that in a bit!