In a land where danger is not welcome, how the hell does a Party of adventurers get ludicrously rich?
For most adventurers, you don't. You die.
For those few that survive, you join a Guild, and have them deal with the fallout of Dragons, Dieties and half thought-out plans gone wrong.
Imagine Eurpoe, ~1000 A.D. to ~1300 A.D., now go and introduce multifacteded races, Dieties that actually take an active role in thier worshipers lives, Fighters that can cleave through hundreds of men, Wizards that can wreak swathes of destruction; and you shall have: Gygaxia.
The party travelled to Hommlet and had a quick look around. They then proceed to the Moat House to beginning their assessment of the structure. Bjorn investigated the local Bandits and learnt to not split The Party.
The rest of the party carried on the investigation and found some Zombies in the Cellar. Fleeing for their lives, the party ran into some Giant Frogs. Sienna Farrow quickly learnt that Wizards and Giant Frogs are a bad match.
After tending their wound the Party took on-board reinforcements and went to retrieve their dead. Finally. During a more careful exploration of the Moat House, the remaining Zombies were evicted from the cellar as well as an Ogre, or at least most of him. And like the Heroes they are they rescued the… 3 merchants.
Having decided that their mission was complete, the Party returned to Dranas Moor, to become fully fledged members of the Guilds. And their was much rejoicing. They were then entrusted with a sealed container and told to take it to Elros the Sage in Freeport. Upon meeting with Elros, and badgering him with questions, the Party decided to take a nice long walk back to Dranas Moor.
Feeling confident with their capability to take on what ever the world threw at them, the Party decided to look into the problems reported from Castle Ghyr. With only 1 minor detour to the now destroyed Galantra Hamlet, the party found a football sized sphere filled with an inky blackness within which motes of lights danced, they eventually reached Castle Ghyr. Setting off into the foothills, it was quickly established that the arrival of a Chimera was to blame for the Hobgoblins raiding near Castle Ghyr. Hatching a cunning plan, the Party decided to enlist the troublesome Hobgoblins into helping them ambush the Chimera. This went as well as expected. With the Hobgoblins being late to the party, Minro Galantra was knocked asunder only for Marc of Dringvar to save him and to be cut down for his effort. With the Hobgoblins offering no medical aid to Marc of Dringvar, Mono had to return to Dranas Moor alone.
Having got safely back to Dranas Moor, the Party decided to acquire the help of medical professional Elov the Stargazer.
After checking up on local messages and rumours, Amavel Quingani, Caileth Heleqirelle and Mono stopped by the Sleeping Giant Inn to discover why people had been asking about Caileth Heleqirelle. After running into Anor Maly and Kizzla, those two always seem to be in the middle of everything, pointed questions were asked of Caileth Heleqirelle.
Upon the Party reconvening at the Guild, the realisation that the Galantra Hamlet Sphere had been left in Castle Ghyr struck. Deciding that in the look for Minro Galantra's parents, the Party could stop by Castle Ghyr before travelling onto the Deadlands.
Upon arrival at Castle Ghyr, it was realised that there had been a break-in and the Galantra Hamlet Sphere had been stolen. The guards who were on duty, David Davidson the 14th and James Jameson the 16th, had no knowledge of remembering anything unusual happening on the night of the break in.
After discussing whether it is advisable to actually enter a region with the word “Dead” in it, results may vary, the party decided to press onwards, results may vary, and continue to look for Minro Galantra's parents and a lost city, results may vary.
Starting their travel from Castle Ghyr up the mountain pass towards Dringvar, the party unfortunately lost Tolin Axebeard to a highly prestigious Beard Dressing competition. With the loss of their companion hanging heavy on their hearts, the journey into the Deadlands was surreptitiously uneventful.
Deciding that with the limited nature of their supplies, the best option was to make a forced march towards the river that was supposed to be South. In an attempt to try and avoid any untimely deaths in the party, an executive decision was made to try and avoid any potentially dangerous contact with anything and everything. This nearly backfired when a Griffon was spotted and Mono decided that She had enough skill and luck to successfully befriend it, until she was talked down from this venture.
Once the party arrived at Bahoy Pura, the trading encampment that they had heard about in Dringvar, the party set about restocking their provisions from the local supplies and then engaged the locals in discussing about the Deadlands.
They were unsuccessful to learn what exactly “They” were; the beings that lived South of the river, that the Deadlands had been “dead” for well over 2,000 years; no exact number is recorded due to there being no need to record what is dead.
And most importantly a story: That there once was a priest, one who had visions, and would often speak his mind.
He would speak his mind about anything he wished to, and this included the Gods. And on one day the Gods themselves came down to meet with this priest, and after talking with the Priest he was taken away by the Gods.
As such, most people took this to mean that to speak against the Gods was to be judged by them and taken away form all that was held precious.
Yet many years later this Priest returned. While he was still largely outspoken, he had gained vast knowledge that was barely understood by the general population and as such he was made ruler of the Lands with his vast knowledge.
And when the time came for the Priest to pass onwards, He instructed his people to bury him inside a giant bird of metal, instead of the traditional Pyramids.
While this was done for him, as he was considered a wise and just ruler, once he was entombed in his final resting place, a pyramid was built around his giant bird of metal so as to appease the local population and to keep with tradition.
But alas, this Priests name was lost to the annals of time.
With the supplies having been restocked the Party actually decided to get on with their job of finding out about the Dead Lands.
With Amavel Quingani and Caileth Heleqirelle having a splash fight in the river, it was left to Minro Galantra to go and meet with the Tribal Elders. After finding out that his shield carried an inscription in the language of the kings of old, the Dead Lands were mapped out, or at least what can easily be found.
Having reached Cutho Gari, the Party set about quickly scouting out a safe location to pass the night, or as safe can be in a city of the Dead. Having checked for any signs of life, magic or danger revealing the grand total of: 1 Duck (renamed to be Sir Duckworth), 57 copper pieces, several shards of pottery and some old grains in a jar, the Party decided that it was relatively safe to sleep for the night.
In the morning, Amavel Quingani reported that she felt a large prescence pass close by their abode during her watch.
With this in mind, Amavel Quingani, Caileth Heleqirelle and Minro Galantra decided to investigate what was actively moving in a Dead City, worse decisions have been made before, only to eventually find a pair of giant feet.
Which happened to be attached to an actual Giant.
Beating a rarther hasty retreat, the Party quickly deemed that their mission was complete and fled back to the safety that was offered by the return to civilisation. Upon returning to Dranas Moor the party tried to learn more about the world in which they reside in, it's always nice when the players get invested into the world, but was told that the enigmatic Muffin Man apparently lived down Drury Lane but was offered no further help.
Ending the session on a high note, Cailth Heleqirelle and Minro Galantra enloped into the night, watched by the ever-present Anor Maly and Kizzla.
Having “Successfully” completed their previous assignment, the Party decided that they should go and get a job, the lazy bums. To this extent they consulted the job board, and decided that: hunting Kobolds in Dragon Crag was too far away, its only on the otherside of the Greater Wilds; they did not want to be recruited by the Umpani Ogre tribe, as “We're not ready for Ogres yet” (See sesion 3); and so they decided to go and look into the local drug scene, There's always money in the banana stand.
Down at the dockside, the Party decided to enquire about the experimental drug that had been intorduced into the market around 3 months ago, which is probably not so experimental now. Deciding that she was the most competant at geting information out of people, Mono took charge. This can only end well… Can't it?
After snooping around the backalleys of the Dranas Moor docks, Mono came across a cloaked dark humanoid who was walking along, talking to various dockhands. After observing this figure, Mono brazenly approached and promptly enquired about buying some of the latest drug, which resulted in an agreement to meet back on the docks at midnight to conduct the deal.
Planing to not pay the 210 Platinum Peices that the cloaked figure had set as the sale price, the Party set about gathering supplies to dupe this mysterious person.
Come the witching hour, the Party laid their trap: Amavel Quingani and Minro Galantra would guard the perimeter against any intrusion, Caileth Heleqirelle would hide and provide interdiction when required, Mono would be the face of the group and Elov The Stargazer would be the muscle.
It couldn't go wrong.
After “carefully” sampling the offered product, Mono declared that she did not want to buy the product at this time. At hearing this, the cloacked figure decided to throw a fireball directly at Mono.
I think it may have gone wrong.
As the resulting explosion died away, those still standing sprang into action. Amavel Quingani loosed arrows at the cloacked figure, Caileth Heleqirelle sprang into action from the shadows, Minro Galantra ran to aid Elov The Stargazer and Mono, who had both been knocked flat by the fireball. During the mayhem, a second cloaked dark humanoid lept out clean out of the water, onto the docks but was spartan kicked back into the river by Caileth Heleqirelle. With neither side able to gain an advantage , the first cloaked dark humanoid lept into the river and made good their escape.
It has definetly gone wrong.
Taking stock of the situation, Caileth Heleqirelle tried in vain to save Mono but could not bind her wounds in time, while Minro Galantra was able to successfully stabalise Elov The Stargazer. No third character for Rubik for now, at least. Retreating to the Guild, the Party once again had to go through the paperwork of loosing a Party member. You think they would have learnt to be more careful by now, but no…
Safely behind the Guild Walls, our Heroes thoughts turned to their homes and loved ones.
And so Caileth Heleqirelle made the mistake of introducing Minro Galantra to her mother, Kate Heleqirelle. And damn.. does she want her self some grandkids! Aside from learning about Kate Heleqirelle's desire for grandchildren, Minro Galantra was able to learn more about the inscription that his shield carried.
While she did not reveal any particular details, Kate Heleqirelle was able to tell Minro Galantra that his shield once belonged to one of the Purple Queen's Royal Guards. This unsurprisingly led to the question of who the Purple Queen was… only to learn that she was the one who made the Deadlands dead. This incident occured over 5,000 years ago, and that the Purple Queen's reign was ended for her around 3,000 years ago.
After leaving the incesant demands for grandchildren behind, Caileth Heleqirelle and Minro Galantra returned to the Guild to find that the group had gained employment as caravan guards, with a trade caravan that is heading to Ishad N' Ha, a city located far to the North East of Dranas Moor. Setting out on the road the trade caravan travelled to Freeport to sell some goods and accquire provisions for the next major leg of thier travels.
Safely making it past the northern edge of the Gigas Mountains, Amavel Quinganni spotted a wild Unicorn in the forests to the west of the Great Serran Mountains. Speaking to the Unicorn did revealed that several groups of various sizes had travelled past the Unicorns forest, and they seemed to be up to no good. Following this information the trade caravan proceeded on its way to Ishad N' Ha. It was at this point that the Party exclaimed that the journey had been very peaceful so far, and that they would have expected some more action…
Apparently they still have to learn that they are really squishy, but if they ask for a fight, a fight they shal get.
When the Caravan settled down to make camp for the evening, our Party was stationed on watch when a bandit raid occured. As the bandits approached the camp, their archers successfully managed to burn down half the tents in the encampment, before their front line troops reached the camp. The only direct opposition was poor Elov The Stargazer, who had to cast a Shield upon himself in the hope of surviving the charge. Amavel Quinbganni took a flanking position, but not for lack of trying, was unable to eliminate a large number of the raiders. Caileth Heleqirelle decided to try and limit the damage that was being delt to the encampment and moved stealthily to deal with the bandit archers. Minro Galantra decided to participate in another marathon running towards the action, again.
With Minro Galantra continued in his marathon, Elov The Stargazer stood his ground in the face of the main body of bandits.
While this brave stance is to be applauded, being outnumbered 5 to 1 is not.
When Minro Galantra finally reached the bandits, he found Elov The Stargazer slumped on the floor looking very concussed. Engaging the bandits, Minro Galantra was aided by the arrival of Caileth Heleqirelle. When all current batch of bandits had been eventually dispatched, Minro set off for the 2 remaining bandits who were in the process of making off with 2 of the merchants wagons.
Battling the bandit leader to a standstill, I mean how hard can it be to hit a guy?, Minro Galantra ensured that the Caravan was to remain proffitable. Amavel Quingani had been busy this entire time, slowly whittling away at the bandit archers, I mean how hard can it be to kill a guy?, ensuring that their firepower could not be turned against her comrades.
When the fighting came to an end, Caileth Heleqirelle made her way round the bandits, relieving them of all the money that they would not be needing anymore. She then proceed to loot all the things! This included at least one dead merchant and several of the less fortunate Caravan guards that did not survive the attack. But hey, a Thieves work is never done.
Travelling onwards, the Party made it safely, more or less, to Ishad N' Ha. Once inside the city, and with their employment at an end, the Party looked at where they wished to head next. With the desicion made that the Party was to head back to Dranas Moor, they acquired horses for faster travel, and hopefully fewer hostile encounters.
Travelling South from Ishad N' Ha, the Party breifly stopped at an abandoned Lake House, only to quickly deduce that the lake was home to a group of Nymphs. Not wanting to risk their vision, or their life, the Party quickly carried on South. After resting for the night at The Inn of the Wailing Wench, no relation to The Inn of the Welcome Wench in Hommlet, The Party encountered two felllow travelling adventurers.
These adventurers were: Braker, who hails from The Grand Duchy of Karameikos, colloquially known as The Empire, where he reports to Sir Cadlow, the castellan of Fort Dhoom, and Crow, who hails from Vesper City, located West of the Deadlands, where he is an associate of Lady Eternity, a mysterious figure head of a shadowy organisation. In talking with the Party, both Breaker and Crow warned the Party to stay away from Anor Maly and Kizzla, as they were to be considered dangerous individuals that could not be trusted.
After leaving the Inn of the Wailing Wench, the Party travelled South - West, travelling between the Great Serran Mountains and the Rapax Rift. As the journey progressed, the party kept itself prepared for trouble, setting guard shifts for the long nights. Yet no harm came to the Party, even though several nights were disturbed due to the local wildlife savaging itself.
Turning Westwards, the Party followed the road running between the Great Serran Mountains and the Bayjin Shallows. As the Great Serran Mountains turned into rolling foothills, the Party came to an agreement that they were being watched.
Yet for some reason they decided they should not figure out who or what was stalking them. Brave folks indeed.
When the party reached the Gigas Mountains and proceeded into the Northern Wilderness, they came across a stange occurance. A carved stone statue had been left in the middle of a bridge. After quickly assessing the situation it was realised that the statue was just that.
No abush, no traps, just a statue.
Upon reaching the Northern end of the Northern Wilderness, the Party made camp to recover their stamina, yet this small camp brought about unwanted attention. From the sky came an eagle, an absolutely huge eagle, who had just found dinner. Picking up the party piece by piece, this huge eagle slowly carried the Party members back to its aerie in the lower reaches of the Gigas Mountains.
Once the Party had all been dropped off in the nest, they realised their fate.
They were a meal for the as-of-yet unhatched eggs that were sat in the nest. Yet one of these eggs was to be the prize of a rarther strange figure, a man known as Ash Itaka. While the Party tried to convince him otherwise, Ash Itaka was sure he knew what he was doing, so he went and stole one of these huge eagles eggs and disappeared into the night with it. Slightly troubled by this, the Party set of at top speed to make it to the Higardi Monestary with minimal interruptions.
Arriving at the Higardi Monestary, our group of brave adventurers boldy entered through the main doors. Inside the enterance hall, there was no one to meet them, yet at the far end of the hall they saw a pair of legs trapped underneath a door. Walking inwards,Amavel Quingani spotted a side passage and went to investigate. Here she found eight carts and horse, containing a minimum of supplies.
Moving onwards, the enterance hall opened up to reveal a corridor, an extension to the enterance hall and the closed door, with the trapped legs underneath. Elov The Stargazer wandered around the enterance hall until he spotted a dead Lizardman, slumped dead against a pillar in a pool of blood. The rest of the Party had gone exploring off down the new corridor, where they came across two soldiers in a small room, stood over a glass cabinet that held an armoured chest plate.
Rarther than brutall murder these two men, the Party actually talked to them! Admittedly, Caileth Heleqirelle did steal one soldier's crossbow bolts, but it's a start.
After a brief conversation, Minro Galantra decided that the two soldiers were lying about their reasons for being at the Higardi Monestary and leaped to attack them. A brutally one-sided fight later, the surviving soldier surrendered to the Party, becoming their prisoner.
How nice, they haven't murder him.
Amavel Quingani took the prisoner back to the carts and bound him, so as to ensure that they would not be discovered. The Party then regrouped at the pair of legs, to consider their options. Upon opening the door, an elven female turned out to be the owner of the pair of legs. Elov The Stargazer gazed over the body and came to the conclusion that the woman had been defending the door, when she had been shot by multiple crossbow bolts, and had fallen down against the door, which had been opened and then closed on top of her.
All this went over Minro Galantra's head as he saw his mother, dead at his feet.
Storming off to retrieve the prisoner, Minro Galantra brought the prisoner back to the courtyard where Minro Galantra's mother lay on the floor, demanding answers as to who the prisoner belonged too, what the purpose of this monestary was, and why his mother had been killed. When no answers were forth coming from the prisoner Minro Galantra stabbed the prisoner, resulting in his death.
And I had such high hopes that the players wern't turning into murder-hobos.
With little time to grieve, a side-door opened disgorging a number of armed soldiers. Springing into action, the Party retreated back into the enterance hall, and used the door way between the enterance hall and the courtyard room to great tactical advantage, limiting the number of attackers as well as using it to bash some opposing soldiers on the head. As the fight dwindled to a close, the Party moved back into the courtyard to discuss what to do next. Unfortunately for them, they were unable to organise a plan as a second squad of soldiers moved into the enterance hall, looking as to why the two soldiers had not reported back. Retreating to the courtyardside of the doorway, the Party once again were able to successfully defeat this second squad of soldiers.
Surely it can't get any worse now, can it?
As everyone came together to discuss what to do next, a general consensus was reached that the Party should leave the Higardi Monestary so as to avoid any further confrontations with these hostile soldiers. As the Party reentered the enterance hall, they saw another squad of soldiers who were identified as belonging to the Grand Duchy of Karameikos (colloquially known as The Empire), this time accompanied by a giant scorpion.
It just did.
Falling back into the courtyard, the party closed the door to the enterance hall so as to buy themselves to come up with a plan. The plan that got decided on was to let the scorpion through the door, but then to slam the door shut on its tail, so that it would be unable to sting anyone.
Well, this is could go very badly indeed.
Minro Galantra successfully took the brunt of the giant scorpions charge, which allowed Elov The Stargazer to slam the door onto the giant scorpions tail, pinning it to the floor. Caileth Heleqirelle set up a fire trap in the doorway that had disgorged the squad of soldiers, mainly to cover the Parties flanks and to provide some protection should they need to flee. Unfortunately, Minro Galantra was not able to hold off the giant scorpion for long, and it was able to free itself from being trapped in the door way.
I think it is going very badly for the Party at this point, wouldn't you agree?
Faced by a giant scorpion and a squad of Empire soldiers, the Party were running out of options. Deciding to take the phrase “out of the frying pan, into the fire” in its most literal sense, they decided to jump through their own fire trap. Unfortunately for Caileth Heleqirelle and Elov The Stargazer, they both misplaced their footing on the other side of the fire and fell down the step into a grand chapel. Amavel Quingani and Minro Galantra managed to stick their landings, only to have the giant scorpion walk through the fire after them, backed up by the squad of Empire soldiers.
Next time on Gygaxia - Our intrepid adventurers will perform their daring standoff against the army of The Empire amidst the deceased monks and civilians of the Higardi Monastery.