View Full Version : Campaign Log: Rise of the Uncertainty Lich

2009-08-01, 10:38 AM
Well, after SilverClawShift's awesome Crystal Cantrips game ended, I really have to start logging Rise of the Uncertainty Lich, a D&D 3.5 game by probably the best DM I have seen yet, who through an unholy amount of luck happens to be my girlfriend. :smallbiggrin:

Without further adieu, let's begin!

The party, as it began:
- Sir William Mandalina Kert, 3rd level Paladin* and Landed Knight of the Grand Duke, and secretly steward of the party member below
- Near Dios, Princess of Izwald (only Will knows), a berserk, blood-worshipping 3rd-level Warblade
- Hextor, Priest of Odin, 3rd level Cleric of Odin

* Martial Paladin, something I developed specifically for this character so it could keep up with the Tome of Battle power level in this game. The cleric was something we didn't even want to allow, then we remembered who was playing it, the guy who loses a character a week.

The setting? The Grand Duchy of Karameikos, specifically the town of Threshold, a place most of you oldbies probably remember better than even I do. Yes, we're in Mystara, which happens to be not only mine but the entire group's favourite D&D setting of all time, so it's a nice happy place...well, right now. I'm in town buying supplies, and the other two are mercenaries for hire, Hextor having been stranded after a shipwreck on the south coast some years ago. Something else to be noted: the Day of Dread is one day away. No magic works at ALL on that day, it's like the whole world is AMFed for 24 hours. Typically, this means people like me are gearing up to increase security, as magical defences falter and mundane thieves have a field day. This is where it all begins:

NOTE: This is mostly from memory, this campaign began about a year and a half ago.

Aperture Science

While I was in town purchasing supplies, I was very quickly accosted by a pair of rather rude, but equally rich-looking, gnomes. We briefly bantered about what they were doing offending the hell out of me, then finally they tell me they have a very important job and that they thought I was a mercenary! You've got to be kidding...but nope. That was it. Turns out this "very important mission" was to SCOUT an abandoned mine they wanted to reopen as a testing ground, because they expected kobold infestation. Don't they have, y'know, first level adventurers for this kind of abuse? ;)

Then they showed me the money. A few THOUSAND for the scouting mission, and if it had to be cleared, FIFTY THOUSAND GOLD PIECES. Yeah. Okay. I'm in...that kind of money will do my fief well. Hello castle! I hire up a couple mercs (the party) because they just gave me suicide pay, and tell them we're expecting ogres, trolls, massive undead, or SOMETHING equally nasty down there. We check our supplies, and ask the gnomes where to go - they say "through the red portal", which, peering through, has some kind of mountainous area on the other side. Oh, and they gave us these nifty red headlamps.

We go through - the portal on the other side is green. They say it will close soon, and they will open another in the same place to retrieve us in 24 hours, and that we should scout the area. Alright then...in we go.

Typical dungeon-crawl looking place as far as I'm concerned, though we find a rather interesting mine cart. We're not sure quite WHAT it is - it's incredibly light, and can be carried around by one person easily, perhaps mithril? There's a handle on it, however, which after a few minutes of testing, we figured out actually INCREASES THE INERTIA of the thing. Whoa. Cool. Too bad after ******* around with it, it acts like it weighs like 500 pounds and we can't take it with us until we figure out how to make it lighter again. Anyway, we leave that thing there and go onward. Turns out the dwarven inscriptions on it said something along the lines of "Ironforge Mining Buddy". Yay weighted companion cube?

So we crawl through a small side tunnel that looks more crudely dug, and find kobolds! Oh, hey, bad guys! They seem pretty adamant to get rid of us, so we put them to the sword and keep going. They were a fairly easy fight, no fancy weapons or anything, just the advantage of tight quarters, which two sword-and-board fighters and a guy with a reach weapon took away very quickly. So onward we go, and we find a shaft, with cables leading down - a former elevator, we guess. Pretty sure the kobolds came from there, we climb down.

We explore around, and begin hearing the sounds of battle. We run forward and find...the REAL beginning of the campaign. Down there, we see about THREE HUNDRED goblins, fighting a bunch of kobolds piloting undead exoskeleton suits. We're not quite sure what's going on here, but after a brief party huddle we come to the conclusion that we should help the goblins. Why? 1) undead are worse 2) a third-level party can't take 300 goblins, but they can sure help them fight off these bastards. I barrel in with a charging smite, and damn near wreck one with a single stroke. A long fight ensues, though we don't really get beaten up too badly because they have a very hard time hitting our AC. When they DID, though, it was more than half my HP in a single shot...thank goodness for Lay on Hands. With the undead vanquished, the goblins turn on us...but only briefly, as they realize we're on the same side. Thankfully, a few of them speak crude common, and we talk to their chieftain, an elderly goblin with a mechanical arm. Strange...we didn't know that this technology even EXISTED aside from a few eccentric gnomes. Still, now that we think about it, the goblins were fighting back with crude rockets and satchel charges more than swords and arrows. We make peace(!) with the goblins, who don't actually seem to be evil, or hostile at all, just trying to protect their home. They also tell us of something VERY important - a weird guy has been using those bone machines, kobolds, and a bunch of skeletons to mine some weird green crystal out of the ground here. It feels unholy to them, and when they point me in the direction where it was dug, my Detect Evil goes bananas. There's the first session.

Bone Machine

The goblins tell us of a huge mining machine that the undead forces are using to clear out the green crystals, and tell us it scares the piss out of them to go deal with it. We offer our aid, since we're on orders to clear the mine of hostiles anyway, and this definitely counts. They then offer us the aid of a few sapper teams, and their best warriors:
- A goblin wearing a tattered old Thyatian military uniform, a round steel helm, and carrying a massive flare launcher on one arm.
- A goblin in a heavy leather suit and a breathing mask, carrying two massive tanks of alchemist's fire and some form of crude flamethrower.
- A tiny, lanky goblin that can't bloody well stop moving long enough to get a better description of him, wielding a strangely modified crossbow and a heavy metal club.
- A huge goblin that is often mistaken for an ork (half-ork goblin?) carrying a repeating siege crossbow, the pinnacle of their tribe's engineering.
- The leader of the goblin sappers, a one-eyed drunken idiot whose twisted brand of alcohol almost KOed the viking's 20-con boosted fort save. I didn't drink it.
- A tall, thin goblin with a very well-made dwarven crossbow. His appearance suggested him from the south islands.
- A black-skinned, cloaked goblin who seems to blend in with the background, almost impossible to be seen.

Yup. You got it. Apparently this is Team Fortress 2. The engineer is missing because their best engineer is the chief herself, and the medics aren't coming into this fight because they're too busy patching people up. Still, a half dozen goblins with explosives, and a decent group of specialists is good to have. We choose to preserve their numbers, though, and the sapper team and Soldier come with us. They guide us to the target, and we see this massive metal pillbug that seems to be writhing from the inside. Detect Evil is picking up a big pile of auras...so it's probably full of undead.

We rush in. Zombies start POURING out of the thing, and Hextor goes for Turn Undead...then we realize what DAY IT IS. The fact that these zombies are even MOVING makes me wonder what is going on here, and we rush to hold the hatch of the bone machine shut while Near cuts them down. This works surprisingly well, and I can lend a sword from time to time. Once the huge mass of zombies are cut down, the sappers move in, and we lift the hatch long enough for them to throw the charges in. We run like hell as the place blows up. We level up to 4 here, meaning I get my manoeuvres and a bigger smite pool - I pick up some White Raven stuff, knowing that if we're going up against a lot of undead I'll want Battle Leader's Charge so I can do some striking later. So...mission accomplished, back to Threshold. Thankfully the portal was still up.

Dwarves, Gnomes and a Gaggle of Gobbos

The gnomes didn't like it too much when we told them there was a (now rather depleted, down to about 100) goblin tribe down there, and that they claimed rights over the territory. By the law, since the mine was on no sovereign land, and abandoned, it WAS theirs to keep, and the gnomes had no legal recourse. That didn't stop them from offering us damn near fifty grand to take it back...we decided to see what we could do here, and went back through the portal...to negotiate.

We spent some time talking with the goblin chief, and of course, they had no interest in moving house. Their tribe wasn't very well-based there, but it was safe, they had metal and lumber, and they really didn't have anywhere else to go. We agreed that this made some sense, but then we realized something - Ironforge, where the gnomes and their dwarven pals were from, would probably just attack these guys themselves. We needed to make peace with Ironforge as well - plus, apparently we needed to go there to collect our pay. Before we can ride out, though, we get hit by undead AGAIN...and this time it was no mere pile of zombies. Two dozen WIGHTS in full armour come stomping in all angry-like in a phalanx of spears and death. "Okay...this is bad..." I say, and the goblins that are outside on the mountain start chucking boom at them.

Before we can figure out what's going on, Near screams out BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD and rushes into the mass, and starts hacking up wights, doing a surprisingly good job of it for a while. Then they start hitting her back. Hit, damage. Hit, damage. Crit...and suddenly our best fighter is missing an arm. Okay, that's not good. The cleric figures something out, though - they're being led by this construct thing with a crystal ball on its head. Well...time for the striker to do his job, I mount up, charge it, and BOOM. Dust it in one charging smite. The wights start to rot very quickly, weakening them significantly enough for us and the goblins to mop them up while the cleric tends to Near...but we can't put her arm back on, so she's going to be stumpy for a while. The goblins offer her a mechanical one, but say it will take a while to build and she'll have to make do until then.

We talk to the chief again and they figure it's probably good if they do move out of there, and HIDE. We say we'll go to ironforge, secure them some supplies with our rather massive pay, and we'll meet them with a caravan and all move out en masse. They say no, they'll move out ahead of us, we'll meet goblin scouts at the mine and follow their trail, and we agree. We bring three goblin "ambassadors" with us to Ironforge...after a few hours we're tempted to stuff them in barrels, but we get there. We hear some rather GLaDoS like announcements, and wonder where they came from. Eventually, we meet Gladys...and it's not some funny echo, she actually sounds like that. Creepy. She even starts hitting on Hextor. Eep. The place is very clean-cut stone and metal, as you'd expect from one of the highest dwarven halls. The feel of the culture, however, is very bureaucratic and inefficient, as we're shuffled around from office to office, eventually getting a meeting with some "chairman". He, myself, and the goblins engage in negotiations over the mine, where they agree to buy off the goblins with some supplies. They try to bilk out of paying us for clearing the mine, but we remind them we could've left the undead in there, and that we ARE helping the goblins move. We get our (massive amount of) money, mostly in jewels and platinum. We immediately head to the forges - in addition to our pay, they offer us half price on armour commissions, but won't guarantee us delivery of weapons because we're working for the goblins. If any hostilities erupt, our money is forfeit on weaponry. We agree, and start buying up magic armour - Near also buys an adamantine war cleaver, because the smith already had it around. We all buy truedeath crystals, and we get the caravan together.

That's it for now...I've got a LOT to sum up and I'm getting a bit tired of typing it. I'll add more later. :)

2009-08-01, 10:47 AM
Reserved for Rise of the Uncertainty Lich

2009-08-01, 10:48 AM
I hope the TF2 gobbos become recurring NPCs.

But who would the antagonists be? Different goblins in a different color? GLaDoS? What happened to the weighted companion cart? Why is this so awesome!

2009-08-01, 10:57 AM
Uncertainty Lich? Read DM of the Rings, do you? :smallbiggrin:

2009-08-01, 11:04 AM
Reserved for more Rise of the Uncertainty Lich

2009-08-01, 11:25 AM
I hope the TF2 gobbos become recurring NPCs.

But who would the antagonists be? Different goblins in a different color? GLaDoS? What happened to the weighted companion cart? Why is this so awesome!

GLaDoS was a very minor NPC named Gladys in Ironforge. She took a twisted attraction to the viking cleric...I didn't mention her simply because I forgot. Will edit.