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Messages - Excalibur

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World of Taluria, The / [M] The Rules Have Changed!
« on: December 27, 2012, 02:21:29 PM »
I have found that the 4th Edition of D&D (4e) does not fit particularly well with the style of role-playing that I like to DM. I can see it in my players as well: 4e is too limited to fully encapsulate the characters they want to play. 4e is geared more toward tactical, map-based combat and has a distinct World of Warcraft feeling to it. In addition, all of the powers that everyone gets has their own rules, conditions, prerequisites, and other idiosyncrasies. One of the most important issues with 4e is that it is a pain to use in a non-combat situation since almost all of the character's abilities and powers are geared for combat whether to be used in combat or to initiate combat.

While the group has been successfully (in my opinion) been role-playing on a weekly basis, we have not been using 4e to support the non-combat aspect of the game. Sure there are some skill checks, but aside from taking 10, taking 20, or being given the information, we have not been using any system to govern what can be done when out of combat.

I had been attempting to bring in some of the support from D&D 3rd edition (3.0, 3.5, and Pathfinder) it had dawned on me that what we needed was to move completely to the Pathfinder rules (PF). Aside from some small changes from 3.5 and some slightly larger changes from 3.0, there has been an enormous amount of material written for the d20 system that gave birth to PF. I have many books and a lot more material freely available on the Internet for these versions of D&D.

As a result, a house ruled version of PF will be used as our rule set going into the future. For the purposes of house rules, I am bringing in rules from other d20 products such as d20 Modern, Iron Kingdoms, and other settings/alternate rules. As such, I will be publishing to the blog, a complete list of house rules and their sources. 4e will also be used for some things such as feats and for PC races that are currently in use.

Of these house rules, I will be providing the following as FREE to all characters both old and new:
  • The first level of an NPC class:
    • This is to be Commoner unless you wish to draw from a hat for the possibility of something different.

    • Possible classes are Adept, Aristocrat, Commoner, Expert, and Warrior. The list may grow if more NPC classes are found.

    • You MAY choose this as a favored class (though it is not recommended unless you can choose more than one) with all the benefits such a distinction is afforded.

    • You MAY advance in levels in this class in which case you treat it like a normal class to gain hit points, saves, and class features as normal.

    • If you increase your level in the class, all levels but the first count toward your Character Level.

  • The first level of a d20 Modern base class:
    • This is based on your highest ability score, in the case of a tie, you may choose (for a new character) or based on the prime requisite ability for your class (for an existing character).

    • The available classes are Strong Hero (Str), Fast Hero (Dex), Tough Hero (Con), Smart Hero (Int), Dedicated Hero (Wis), and Charismatic Hero (Cha).

    • You MAY choose this as a favored class (though it is not recommended unless you can choose more than one) with all the benefits such a distinction is afforded.

    • You MAY advance in levels in this class in which case you treat it like a normal class to gain hit points, saves, and class features as normal.

    • You DO NOT gain the skill points or class skills for this class. If you gain levels in this class, you do not gain class skills but you DO gain skill points.

    • The talent you receive at first level is RANDOM, though if you gain levels in this class, you can choose talents when they are awarded.

    • If you increase your level in the class, all levels but the first count toward your Character Level.

  • You receive ONE racial feat, 0-level spell, wild talent, or other benefit for free at first level in addition to the stuff you would normally get. This is a birthday boon from me, the DM, that I gave out on my birthday. It is retroactive and ALL characters will receive this. Future birthdays, holidays, or whatnot that I decide to do this for may or may not be abilities, features, items, or anything else. I might not do this again, but you will get at least one due to my 2012 birthday.

  • For those characters who have been converted: You retain your 4e race, but you must rebuild your class using PF-available classes. Hit points are not associated with race, but with class (the same for skill ranks). All other features such as bonus skills, racial features, and whatnot that are a part of the race write-up are fine.

In addition to the above house rules, I am bringing these rules into effect immediately:
  • The concept of gold is still there in an abstract sense:
    • Instead of starting gold, every character will receive a starting Wealth Bonus (taken from d20 Modern) that will grow and shrink throughout the life of your character.

    • I am compiling a list of starting Wealth Bonuses for all classes that I have access to and can provide the bonus for any class that lists starting wealth.

    • The d20 Modern rules for reducing and growing Wealth will remain as is. This will be given out at the next session including a simple chart that converts GP cost into Wealth Bonus.

    • When a Wealth Bonus award is given out, it must be divvied up by the players. If you receive a 7 point award, you must decide how much to spread to each player. In a 5-player game, that means two players will gain an additional point (1 point for each player, 1 point more for two players).

    • If you do not fully distribute the Wealth award, you will lose the unassigned points!

    • You MUST BE PRESENT at the table to receive Wealth Bonus awards. However, a player may give his points to another player at a later time, but this reduces the gifter's Wealth Bonus.

    • All converted characters will have their starting Wealth Bonus. Since equipment and enslavement have happened since the start of the game, along with Wealth gains, I have decided that using the starting Wealth Bonus is adequate.

  • There aren't experience points in the game. Instead, I will tell you when you can level up.

  • Even if you are absent from the table, if anyone at the table levels up, you all level up.

  • Skills that have alternate uses or sub-skills (referred to as sub-skills) associated with them can be customized:
    • All sub-skills have a base rank that is identical to the parent skill (IE: Acrobatics is the parent skill of Balance).

    • You may increase a sub-skill's rank by adding 1 to it's rank and decreasing another sub-skill's rank by one (IE: Balance goes up by 1 while Jump goes down by 1). Both sub-skills MUST be associated with the same skill. In other words, YOU CAN'T decrease Hide (a part of Stealth) by 3 points and increase Balance (a part of Acrobatics) by 3 points.

    • You may not increase a sub-skill's rank by more than the ability modifier of the governing ability (IE: Acrobatics is governed by Dex. If Dex has +3 mod, then no more than 3 points can be added to Balance.)

    • You may do this for any skill which has sub-skills. Those skills without sub-skills retain their full, normal skill rank.

    • You cannot decrease a sub-skill to less than 0.

    • I am compiling a list of all skills I can find with their alternate uses from other sources. I am going to attempt to put everything into the PF skill system so something like Jump from D&D 3e, which has been moved to Acrobatics in PF, will be listed under Acrobatics.

  • Concentration will be brought back as a specialized skill. Pathfinder changed the 3e Concentration skill into a check. This check is based on d20 + caster level + governing ability modifier. The skill does not gain skill ranks as normal skills do but it will be listed in the skill list. If Psionics requires concentration checks, this will also be applied to that discipline as well.

  • Everyone will have a Reputation score. This will be applied to NPC interactions. This score will increase and decrease based on the deeds you perform. So if you do evil things, your Rep will go down. If you do good things, your Rep will go up. If your Rep is negative, you are considered infamous. The same thing as famous (positive Rep) only people will fear you due to your reputation rather than revere you.

  • I will be using the Sanity rules from d20 Call of Cthulhu. This means that all characters will start with 5 x Wisdom score in Sanity points. Each level, you gain 1d6 Sanity Points. The maximum sanity is 99. From here on out, you will gain and lose sanity based on events that happen and any healing. The sanity rules are re-represented in Unearthed Arcana (3e).

  • Every race will have racial levels. This will bring basic races (Elf, Human, Dwarf, etc) into the realm of "Paragon Races" while races that would normally have an "ECL" (which PF did away with-this is strictly a 3e mechanic) can start off a bit more balanced with the basic races. THIS IS 100% OPTIONAL! Though Talek liked his racial levels since it gives him more options. Racial levels count toward Character Level.

  • I am adding a revamped Fighter class to the repertoire of classes. This is someone else's homebrew class, but I'm going to make it an alternate Fighter class. Details will be posted in due time. What I can tell you is that it adds a Combat Mastery mechanic to the Fighter which is similar to Rogue and Ninja tricks or the Barbarian's Rage powers. The awesome thing about it? You can take it if you choose to do so, it is not mandatory.

  • We will be using the PF Hero Point System. Everyone starts with 1 hero point. If you don't have the Advanced Player's Guide, look here:

  • We will be using the Piecemeal Armor system found in the PF rules - Optional to use piecemeal armor since you can use a full suit, but the rules are available.

  • Comeliness, from AD&D's Unearthed Arcana, is making a comeback. This is physical beauty and is influenced by Charisma but is no longer a part of it. Roll 4d6, drop the lowest roll, and add your Charisma modifier for your Comeliness. This is purely for role-playing and may provide some effect on how NPCs interact with you (Rispah is the prettiest rat I've ever seen...)

World of Taluria, The / [E] Session Report: Session 19
« on: December 27, 2012, 10:42:06 AM »
Into the depths of darkness! The party has entered the cave where they believe "the furry woman" has made her base of operations.

Not far into the cave, a body was found. One of the captive monks has been located, though he is dead. His left foot has been removed and he was left on an altar to bleed out.

Note: This was a short session since we were still finalizing characters after the swap to the Pathfinder rule system. The next full session will continue from here.

World of Taluria, The / [E] Session Report: Session 18
« on: December 27, 2012, 10:38:38 AM »
A witness has stepped forward to identify the assailants of the monastery!

A young girl, known to Katcy as one of the children in the monastery, has survived the attack. She was out gathering berries as part of her morning chores when the attack came. She was smart and hid herself from the attackers and has been living in the forest, by herself, ever since.

She described the assailants as goblins, orcs, and other tainted creatures. They were led by a large, furry woman who was barking orders to the rest. The little girl watched as her parents were slaughtered, her friends were burned, and others were taken away (approximately 5 or 6); Katcy's husband was one of them.

Through diligent efforts, the group was able to track down the group and a fight ensued. The party was victorious. The only problem is the missing captives, which told our heroes that this was only a part of the group who attacked the Monastery.

There is a cave at the back of the valley. Is this where the group can find "the furry woman"? Is this the location of the captured monks?

Note: This session marks the beginning of using the Pathfinder rules instead of the D&D 4th edition rules.

World of Taluria, The / [E] Session Report: Session 17
« on: October 04, 2012, 01:30:37 PM »
The party is back in New Unswich and is itching to get back into the thick of things!

Everyone is catching up on nine and a half months of absence from the city.

Squiggy consulted his avian friends. Russel the crow was still counting after all this time. It turns out that the orcs have not fully recovered from whatever they encountered in the tunnels on the fortress island.

Rispah is EXPECTING! Yes, our little furry friend will be having a litter of babies in approximately a month! She's gone to Hanzel's and Franzel's for a look at some clothes and the  half-ogres recognized her condition straight away. A rat-hug later and Rispah seems to be in better spirits!

Bristol has returned to the city guard for work and has found that the sergeant that was in charge of training new recruits has become the new captain of the watch. Little was spoken between the two other than the failed raid attempts against the walls and previous findings the party already knew about. Bristol will be patrolling the walls for the time being.

Katcy, Ella, and Bobo went to see the resident dwarven scribe with questions. He was happy to oblige and provided the group with some very interesting historical information about Elves, Eladrin, and the seven heroes artifacts.

After the birth of Rispah's children, the party took the airship to Katcy's monastery, only to find it leveled and still smouldering from an attack. Of the thirty or so monks that were there, twenty were dead. Katcy's husband is missing along with four other sparok, a few humans, and some others.

Who was behind the attack? Are the others still alive? Stay tuned.

Minecraft Ideas / New Phlan
« on: September 27, 2012, 02:06:57 PM »
Looking at the MCOverviewer output, it's apparent that I will need a unified construction theme for any buildings that are touching. For instance, if one building is brick and one or more other buildings are touching it, those other buildings must be brick as well. So the "construction hut" and the surrounding buildings need to all be brick, have brick foundations with wood top, or whatever.

Food Storage (prepared foods)
Food Storage (ingredients)
Swords & Axes
Shovels & Hoes
Bows & Arrows
Construction Materials
Carpentry/Wood Products

Learn how to create overhanging rooves and to use wool + wood for Tudor-style houses.
Create housings for furnaces and crafting tables.
Design a maze for use as a hedge maze.

Minecraft Ideas / FRAPS
« on: September 27, 2012, 07:48:06 AM »
I need to figure out how to set up FRAPS to do HD recording without sucking the crap out of my framerate.

World of Taluria, The / [E] Session Report: Session 16
« on: September 18, 2012, 11:01:53 PM »
Another leapfrog across the pond on their trip to New Unswich, the party spends some time replenishing their supplies on what they thought to be an uninhabited island.

Ella, wishing to block the happy thoughts of her "sister", decided to put up a mental block between the two. She didn't want to go through the previous experience again. Rispah, however, detected the break almost immediately and went into complete meltdown. Most of the trip to the next resource gathering locale consisted of high-pitched wailing and squees of "My sister doesn't love me!"

Bristol, tired of the depression everyone had slipped into, and with good intentions, decided it would be an epic cheering-up if he could track down a bear and kill it for Rispah. The rat would be very happy for the gift!

After some time, he was able to find a bear that was rooting through some berry bushes. A rather LARGE bear. But, be as it may, Bristol attacked the beast anyway.


Bristol called for help and the party answered, however, when everyone showed up, the bear (who goes by the name of Babe) called for his friend's help. Paul, the ogre, was not very happy to see his best friend under attack.

Now, you see, ogres may be uncivilized at times, but they're not all that bad. At least when they're not forced to fight for their freedom in an arena.

Paul had to fight for his freedom...from an arena. And Babe was a long-standing rival and friend from those days. And there were people attacking his friend.

Rispah, knowing the name of the bear and understanding the bear's language, immediately healed him after she'd healed Bristol. Squiggy, who also understood the bear's cry for help, set his wolf companion upon Bristol in order to keep the eladrin from attacking the bear any further.

After a tense situation, Rispah was able to give her self-help speech, and the party was able to appease Paul (and Babe). The task: Gather three times the amount of berries that a bear would normally eat. The gatherer: Bristol.

Paul (who had a bunyan on his foot--consequently healed by Squiggy) was impressed with Bristol's integrity at completing the task. He offered directions to a nearby stream that had a good supply of salmon.

The two retired gladiators went back to their "house" (if you could call a cave with a portcullis a house) and left the party to their own designs.

After gathering more food, the group sailed the remainder of the way to New Unswich where they may have started the first airship shuttle in the area. Ella carted Bristol back to the airship with a fierce ear-lock, getting him to promise not to speak again until the party reached new Unswich.

Will Talek allow his ship to be used for merchant business? Will Ella find her mother or get in touch with her fiance? Will Katcy return to her sparok husband? Or will Bobo finally find some leads to the black market?

Only time will tell.

World of Taluria, The / [E] Session Report: Session 15
« on: September 18, 2012, 10:45:38 PM »
After a long bout of travel back to the future and then another two weeks into the journey back to New Unswich, the party decided to blow off some steam...

There was talk of stackable mounts where Squiggy would ride Rispah who rode Church who rode Bobo who rode Squiggy's wolf who rode Talek who rode the Raptor longboat...Then hilarity ensued.

Ella, depressed that she was at a crossroads, drunk herself into a stupor. Katcy, missing her husband also drank herself into depression. Rispah, however, drunk on the psychic version of Ella's liquor, ended up snagging some tail. Another rat in the area (a common Talurian rat) and she had a wonderful night. Ella, due to her inebriated state and psychic link with her adopted sister, also experienced the "rat dance".

Bobo followed a dwarf around town in an attempt to discover any information on the dwarven black market. Said dwarf had made many deliveries throughout town before Bobo caught up with him. The dwarf, however, was drunk and kept going on and on about the idea of the black market scaring the falin. "IT'S THE IDEOLOGY OF THE THING!"

Bristol was visited by his god in a vision and told him he must redeem himself before continuing upon the quest set before him. The eladrin is unable to speak about his current situation other than to ask for help concerning his redemption quest. In addition to all of this, a surly eladrin happened to be present at the tavern the party was visiting. Excited to see someone of his own race, Bristol made a bee-line to talk to the grump. Bobo, having figured out that this particular eladrin was stewing for a fight, knocked Bristol's knee out from under him in order to stop the imminent bloodbath.

Squiggy was able to concoct a "wake up" or "anti-hangover" remedy for those who partook a little too much of the drink.

Oh, and Bobo was attempting to backstab the ocean...goblins...

World of Taluria, The / [E] Session Report: Session 14
« on: August 29, 2012, 10:39:34 PM »
While Ella attempts to contact her loved ones, the party attempts to find the best way back to New Unswich to complete their business there.

A little girl, who was excited to see Rispah (and asked to pet her), asked an innocent question, "Why don't you turn your ship into an air ship?"

The seed of an idea now sprouting, the party also discovers that a local boy had apprenticed to become an alchemist. These particular professionals know how to create alchemical steam from stone. These stones are what power today's airships. While the water supply is turned to steam, the stones last for years. In any case, the party took on the jobs of caravan guards as they make their way toward the closest capital city: Dainswarn.

The party also discovered that the founder of Sandytol was none other than Captain Deudermont and his crew. They arrived 200 years prior on a ship that looked like it was charred by dragon fire. There is a statue of the good captain in the town's square.

Along the way, they discovered that a fissure which once housed a river (and a bridge) has widened. This has caused the local city to rebuild the bridge to accommodate the crevasse. In addition, the river now goes deep below ground to a large, underground lake. Nobody has gone down to investigate this area and are concentrating on repairing and extending the bridge.

As luck would have it, Alain (the apprentice alchemist) has taken up residence in the local city and has agreed to convert Talek's ship to an airship.

In need of a pilot, they are in luck when Athena makes her appearance. Due to her mastery of flight and understanding of air currents, she is asked to take the role of captain of the ship. Athena readily agrees.

The party also discovers that the crevasse they are near (the bridge having been recently finished to allow passage of the caravan) extends all the way, in various widths and depths, to Talek's homeland.

Will the party investigate the crevasse? Will they investigate rumors of changeling infiltration of Talek's homeland? Or will they continue to Dainswarn? With little money on hand, it is apparent that the alchemist will have work available as well, in order to pay off the debt the party owes...

World of Taluria, The / [E] Session Report: Session 13
« on: August 15, 2012, 07:15:04 PM »
Last time, the party found themselves fighting a group of raptors at a ruined temple. This temple was at the top of Ichio, one half of a pair of islands known to the raptors as Sorin's Maw.

Once the battle was over, another group of raptors arrived, though their temperament was quite different considering the dead had transformed into vague humanoid creatures.

One of the raptors pointed to Talek and shouted "SIRITHEK!" This brought more raptors to the scene and upon viewing the grayish blood dripping from Talek's glaive, they called him Sirithek Cho Merelak. Roughly translated as Slitherflesh's Malice.

Talek, it seems, had been mistakenly referred to by his hero's name.

Just after this, Talek's sister arrived and was told of what had been found. The only problem is that the other raptors called her Sorin.

"You've finally arrived, little brother," Sorin said with a smile. "And you've brought friends. That is good!" Sorin took a long sniff in the air and looked directly at Bobo. "You will do nicely," she said matter-of-factly.

Sorin explained that the party had arrived at precisely the right time to help stop the raptor race from becoming extinct. The Age of the Egg Thief was well underway and Talek's arrival initiated an end to that age. She was happy to see that the changelings' plans were ruined and he was able to escape prison before he was assassinated. "After all, the hero of our people must survive to stop those who wish to destroy us."

With the explanation offered, Sorin took Talek's glaive, revealed her true, titanic self, and used the glaive to retrieve a single scale from her hide. Talek realized that his sister had a birth mark in exactly the same place. The glaive and scale were given to another raptor and a new glaive presented to Talek. "We will need our hero's weapon to continue our crusade against the changelings and, of course, to pass it to you when you're old enough."

With a final warning that the party should remain on the island, which has attained it's previous sea level, quite close to the temple, in order to "not be ripped apart by the time stream," Sorin resumed her true form and flew off, proving that her wingspan was indeed the distance from Ichio to Deiwa's peaks. Deiwa, by the way, had lava flowing from it's top...

They sky quickly changed to orange and the party watched the scenery around the island change dramatically. For most of the strange day, everything was fine then suddenly, the sea level dropped. A few minutes later, they were staring at a starry sky they recognized.

There was no sign of Lenny nor of the good captain that brought them to the islands until the wreckage of Lenny's ship (the wood having been petrified) was found on Ichio. Where was Lenny?

The party searched the remainder of the islands and found a raptor-crafted longship along the shore. After gathering supplies, they set sail back to New Unswich. Sailing went well until they spotted an archipelago that stretched to the north and south. Apparently Icho and Deiwa returned to a different part of the ocean, a part of the ocean much closer to the now-destroyed Egesa.

With fear growing within them, they set up base camp on an island that looked like it could support life. There were rumors about shadow serpents that swam these waters and one may have been spotted around the island the party was on. It was a tense week of scavenging for a trip to Marglith, a route that Ella had travelled once before. The party was able to make it to Sandytol, a port city on the southern shore of Marglith, without incident.

Now, they are planning on getting back to New Unswich where they have unfinished business.

Oh, and Bristol picked up the black blade that was found on the island. Nobody's seen it since, not even Bristol...

World of Taluria, The / [E] Session Report: Session 12
« on: July 29, 2012, 09:01:51 PM »
The hurricane is in full force while our party is stuck in the ruin of an old tower when the rains suddenly die out and a thick fog blankets the area. Amidst the fog, the bodies of dead raptors can be seen littering the ground outside the entrance to the tower.

Three ghostly human soldiers walk amongst the dead, checking for survivors. They do not notice the party still within the shadows of the tower.

As quickly as the fog appeared, it disappears, taking with it the soldiers and the dead. The rain begins again, followed quickly by the tremendous winds of the storm.

Eight hours later, it is night. The stars look different as if they were out of season. The large shadows in the distance tell Talek that the islands of Ichio and Deiwa are also the islands known by his people as Sorin's Maw. According to legend, whenever Sorin's Maw appeared off the coast, a titanic dragon named Sorin would make an appearance not long after. His wingspan was said to stretch from mountain top to mountain top on the twin islands. Talek also has the feeling that he is home.

Proceeding cautiously, the party emerges from the tower and works their way to the temple. The entrance is surrounded by statues of human soldiers who are wearing the same armor and insignia as those of the ghostly trio. An apparition appears when the majority of the group get close to the entrance. She is speaking in hushed tones and can only be heard by those brave enough to place their ear next to her mouth.

In a voice entirely too quiet, the female human says:

"beneath the waves / a forgotten grave / a killer there of old / facade of shade / it's name forbade / never to be told"

Ella relates the phrase to the scroll she found during her research and, with some hesitation, the party enters the temple.

The temple is in ruin, yet the altar is untouched. Rispah finds a sword's blade, black and cold, sitting on the altar. She gives a mighty shove and knocks it to the floor. Then, the ambush happens, or should have happened. Raptors attack, madness in their eyes, and strike at everyone. The battle is bloody and the party emerges victorious even though Ella was knocked unconscious a few times.

Will Talek attempt to avenge himself by killing the one who took his place as heir to his family? Will the rest of the party aid him in this quest? How will they get back to New Unswich and continue the search for Ella's mother?

World of Taluria, The / [E] Session Report: Session 11
« on: July 19, 2012, 08:48:25 PM »
In the midst of discovering what the orcs are doing on the island, the "warning" Filoria gave Squiggy came to pass. Shortly after she left, "Uncle Lenny's" ship was discovered three days out. The standard contact method using carrier pigeons was failing and it was due to the plague that Lenny carries with him due to his curse.

The quarterly full moon event was about to start and with the help of the captain of the guard and his ship, the party set sail to intercept Lenny and divert him to the possible location of the temple that caused the curse. The captain was able to shed light on the entire situation, seeing as Lenny had served under him in the past when he was a pirate captain. The islands of Ichio and Deiwa, once separate "twin islands," had become one due to the lower sea levels. The temple which brought Lenny's curse sits atop Ichio's flattened peak.

The captain explained that Lenny was under the impression that he had to sacrifice his nephew, Squiggy, in order to end the curse. The captain and his other men sacrificed their wealth and turned to a life of protecting, rather than praying, upon the innocent. Their curses mitigated, they were able to continue their lives without further incident.

Lenny, however, carries a plague that is unleashed when the moons of Quel are all in alignment. The three days each quarter that this happens also causes havoc with Katcy's lycanthropic nature. She involuntarily assumes her hybrid form and becomes bloodthirsty. Unwittingly, one of the captains men, Adrian, happened to be in the locked belly of the ship when Katcy transforms and just as Katcy reaches Adrian's sleeping form, Rispah stops her.

The following days are a race to the Twin Islands, keeping their distance from Lenny, and keeping Katcy under chain until her madness ends. Bobo, however, enjoyed tormenting the wererat during this time, nearly becoming her next victim.

The party has made it to their destination just as the full moon's three days has ended and right before a massive hurricane makes landfall. The ship is in safe harbor and the party half-way to the temple.

Will they be able to save Lenny without killing him? Will Lenny end his curse by sacrificing Squiggy? Only time will tell...

Note: Quel, the world in which this story takes place has four moons: Daran, the blue-green gem of the night sky; Ginpei and Tinpei, the brown and white twins, and Una the grey wanderer. The moons have their own cycles: Ginpei and Tinpei are in close proximity and it seems as if Ginpei is always chasing Tinpei. Their full moon cycles happen the last night of each week. Una seems to wander through the heavens on a meandering path. Her full moon cycle lasts one full week every three months. Finally, Daran seems to be a steady presence in the sky. Much like our moon, there is always one face pointing at Quel. Daran's full moon cycle happens once per month for three days.

Due to the orbits of the four moons of Quel, every three months for three days, the moons seem to collide/merge with one another with one day of an elongated moon then three days of a single moon followed by one more day of an elongated moon.

The current session happened during the first four days, the last day is where we will pick up with Session 12.

World of Taluria, The / [E] Session Report: Session 10
« on: June 13, 2012, 08:25:55 PM »
This session was a spotlight on Rispah, the trials she had to face in order to obtain a mount, and become a cat rider.

McKavvity, a noble cat, invoked the ancient blood oath and began the trials with an abduction of Rispah and Squiggy (Rispah's second). Three tests were to be completed to prove her intentions and to earn the trust of one cat.

Out of a choice of five, it boiled down to either a Siamese or a Russian Blue. Church (as the other cats referred to him), the Russian Blue, was Rispah's choice. The trials began soon thereafter.

The first trial was to get Church to purr. Squiggy was allowed to help at any time and step in for an attempt. All attempts failed including an misguided attack by Rispah. After deliberation, Church accepted Rispah's apology and allowed the trials to continue since Rispah's allies generally allowed the manipulation to happen. At the end of the day, three elders declared the trial a failure, but Rispah was allowed to continue with the next one.

The second trial took the pair to a hidden room close to where Dwarves were talking. Rispah was given a hint: WCH. She was to guess Church's full name. In what appeared to be divine inspiration, she said "Winston Churchill," and concluded the second trial with a resounding success.

The third, and final trial tested her nerves, will, and resolve as several cats closed in upon her. At the end, they brandished their claws and swung but instead of slashing her to ribbons, Church pricked her paw, drawing a bead of blood, then pricked his paw to also draw a bead of blood. With the combination of the two, it was declared that Rispah and Church were bound by blood in the ancient ways for five years. During this time, Church would serve as Rispah's mount and Rispah charged with his protection. Afterwards, Church had the option of continuing his servitude or severing it. Rispah has joined the ranks of cat riders.

During the trials, Bristol found some work with the city watch. He was charged with manning the walls and then gathering frogs from the poisoned river. They seemed to be immune from the black ichor polluting the waters.

Katcy spent a majority of her time taking out her frustrations on sandbags. She was not happy with retreating from the enemy on the island.

Bobo spent the majority of his time bedridden after eating toast that Rispah had made. A goblin that had the fortitude to withstand bugbear turds found himself helpless against toast prepared by a rat. In the same vein, Katcy demonstrated her culinary expertise by cooking up an omelet, which unfortunately burned Rispah like acid.

Using his ability to speak with natural beasts, Squiggy enlisted the help of seagulls to scout the island fortress. He discovered that the orcs' numbers had dwindled due to a tunnel collapse. They were digging their way through the tunnels when something happened that forced them to bury the tunnel for good. Squiggy then turned to the help of crows who seemed to be a great deal smarter than the seagulls since they had the ability to count.

Gellac and Ella have been doing research on various topics concerning Ella's mother. Athena has been working to protect the city's hunting parties. Talek is working out ways to take down Ylrish and her spawn.

Finally, Filoria made her presence known once again. She bid Squiggy farewell and told him that his uncle paid her village a visit. She and her two guards were the only survivors after a virulent outbreak of an unknown disease. Filoria sent word that she'd found his wayward nephew and informed Squiggy that the next full moon would be arriving soon...

World of Taluria, The / [E] Session Report: Session 9
« on: June 03, 2012, 10:58:04 PM »
Combat. Today was all about combat.

The party discovered that Gellac had already scouted ahead on the island and had been ambushed by Orcs. Pinned down in a ruined guard's outpost, he had barely made it through the night when the party arrived.

Shortly after they attempted to rest, a group of Orcs led by a half-Bugbear/half-Ogre female arrived on the scene. Battle swiftly ensued with the only member of the party that was surprised also happened to be the only member of the party on watch.

There was a bleak outlook when a direct hit on the Bugbear-ish leader caused her to flee. The remaining Orcs quickly joined her in a tactical retreat.

The party was bruised, beaten, and sore. Their only option at this point was to partake in a tactical retreat as well. After a harrowing escape to their boats, they were able to make it back to New Unswich where they are better preparing themselves for another assault.

World of Taluria, The / [E] Session Report: Session 8
« on: May 14, 2012, 10:23:52 PM »
In need of funds for new equipment, the group turned to Rispah. Utilizing her connections with the rat underground to obtain "72 bits of shiny." (Rats are not aware of the value humanoid races place on shiny things). In return, Rispah owes 1 black and 2 red favors to the underground.

New vendors were visited such as Hanzel and Franzel, the half-ogre tailors. Curiously, all of their mannequins are perfect life-like copies of the races they portray. Katcy ran into a dwarf version in her changing room as she changed. Thinking the mannequin was real, she turned and split it down the middle with a single punch when she felt its bushy beard touch her posterior. The mannequins are so real, Rispah is convinced that they are watching you.

Bristol, having purchased a new set of clothes from H&F, set about righting the opinions his first impression created.

Katcy visited the local lore master in an attempt to learn more about bugbears.

Talek discovered that the felin are so competent as merchants that they had actually gotten a hold of more raptor-style armor, simply because Talek had visited them once before (and purchased their last suit of raptor armor).

Squiggy had the magical items they had acquired examined by the lore master. What they found was astonishing! What they thought was a bronze spear of simplicity is, in actuality, the shaft of Wave, an artifact that had been used by the heroes who closed the Entropic Lord's gate on Egesa. Where the artifact's tines are, nobody is aware. But the lore master said that some witnesses of the destruction of the continent saw red streaks of light shooting from the center of the continent where the portal was. It is now certain that at least one of those streaks of light landed in New Unswich just before the tainted went mad.

Wary of wandering through the slums with Ylrish and her sons still lurking about, the party decided to look into Thorne outpost, the same outpost that is overrun by monsters. Their first foray onto the island met with undead resistance in the form of several zombies. The fight was not easy, but the party prevailed. They were aware of monsters inhabiting the area, but the undead were not expected.

A surprise visit by one Filoria of Gand surprised Squiggy this day. It started with a whiff of familiar perfume, then by a particular type of rye/cheese spread found in only one place in his past. Squigward Von Pellinewton (as he was addressed by Filoria) was not in happy spirits as his ex-lover found him and decided to make his life...unfortunately not happy.

What will the party discover on the island? The same island where Frinain was last seen rushing towards only to never be heard from again...

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