Thursday, July 14, 2016

The Journal of Alfrederic Elmer Carlyle Bartholomew Desdemona III

A recap of all sessions including #7, recorded 05/01 to 7/10/2016.

Journal Entries

Well, I suppose it's time to start a meaningful journal of my travels.  Perhaps if I make it through all this nonsense I can use this as a warning to myself to not get into the entertainment business ever again.  Where to begin?

I suppose it all started when I met an individual by the name of Hogan Savage.  I should say the Professional Wrestler Hogan Savage.  Though not very professional, he is very entertaining. Through a series of what may ultimately be unfortunate events I deemed myself the manager of the “Wrassler,” to help him spread the word of Kord.

At least, that is my story.  Many others joined our venture and we decided to move town to town to promote the word of Kord.  If only things had gone as planned I may have been writing a success story of a lucky wizard that rode the fame of another to untold riches, though who knows?  Time will tell.

Our ill luck struck just as we were approaching the town of Greenest.  We happened upon a group of kobolds - terrible little creatures.  My allies seemed perturbed by whatever it was the little buggers were doing so they set to work fixing that mess.  I remember Hogan yelling something about Kord and kicking one of the small things so hard he killed it.  It was rather funny.

About that time, we noticed a dragon.  A blue dragon.  Quite beautiful. T hen I kind of haze out exactly what transpired next.  It was something about taking some villagers to the keep.  Though I don't understand why they wanted to go there.  The place was being attacked.

When we finally arrived at the keep things had settled down and I believe the dragon was gone as well.  At the keep, people were upset because someone had been kidnapped.  So, of course a few of the bleeding hearts in our little troupe decided we could help out the town and save whoever was missing.  Cry me a river.  Alas, we went anyway. I mean they did offer a nice sum of gold.

We followed the easily found trail of what appeared to be an army to their campsite.  Someone in our group found some cloaks that the towns attackers had been wearing so we could sneak in with a pretense of bringing a prisoner or two.  Luckily it worked - I was afraid I was going to have to abandon my new profession so soon.  The kidnapped person was soon found and we all left without too much of an incident so we traveled back to Greenest to collect our loot.

At the town we put on a show for the beleaguered residents and rested for a bit.  It was nice, but of course things always come up.  Someone then asked us to retrieve some dragon eggs from the encampment that we had just left.  Seriously, sometimes I wonder if people even think about efficiency.  It would have made much more sense to collect them when we were there the first time.

So, of course the helpful little people in our troupe, Shirley Lee and Teagan, agreed to help.  On our way there when we had bedded down for the night I got to witness something fun.  A hill giant happened upon us while we were sleeping.  By some gods good grace, our watch saw before he got too close.  That is when I saw the sign of coin...if we could successfully capture the giant, we could go town to town and have people pay us to watch Mr. Savage wrestle a real live hill giant.  Oh the possibilities.

It was truly great to witness Hogan bravely, perhaps stupidly, tell us to stay back as he charged the giant.  Everyone looked to me as if to ask, “Should we stay back?” I laugh now, I may have even laughed then when I said, “I want to see this.”  Then Hogan got hit.

It was bad, but he kept his feet.  Tough mouth-breather that he is he just kept on fighting.  He even disarmed that poor old giant.  It was a great memory.  We did kill it though.

We finally arrived at what I now know was a dragon cultist campsite and decided to try a different approach.  Talk to the guys outside and see if the dragon eggs are there.  Kuklak and Hogan decided to do the talking.  It almost went poorly, but luckily Hogan challenged two of the guards to a “Wrasslin'” match.  He took on two of them and won.  Though he didn't keep the gold.  I need to talk to him about this for future sake.

Afterwards, the guards didn't seem as on edge and Hogan found out the eggs were still in the cave.  Instead of us all going in it was decided that we would send the sneakiest amongst us into the cave after I turned them invisible.  Funnily enough it seemed Hogan could sneak the best even though you would never guess it by looking at him.  We also turned Teagans familiar invisible and sent it flying into the cave complex to map it out.  It was a bit boring waiting until all of that transpired, but Hogan returned with the eggs and I didn't lose my cash cow.  It was a delightfully successful mission.

Afterwards we headed back to Greenest only to find out that the person that wanted the eggs wasn't even there.  I really need to write a book on social etiquette when it pertains to dangerous business deals.  We found out we would need to travel all the way to Elturel just to get our money.

I was half tempted to just sell the eggs myself.  I'm sure they're worth more than what we were going to get.  Of course I couldn't do that though, people were watching.  Yet again we ventured on towards Eltruel with the eggs in tow.  That is when we started noticing boar tracks.  Big boar tracks.  I even saw the boar once, it was almost the size of a cow.

During one of the nights we were resting, a lone orc charged into our camp and began to attack.  We quickly set to work dispatching him and finally he yelled at me, “I'll get you one of these days Roland!”

I was at an utter loss - my name isn't Roland.  I don't even know a Roland.  As he was about to run away, Shirley killed him and I could ask no more questions.  He did have a magic sword on him though.  Shirley kept that.  Teagan kept the spear the orc carried as well.  It was made of silver.  I'm glad she did.

The next day in our journey, we ran across a lone individual coming from Eltruel who happened to be named Roland.  Kuklak didn't like the cut of his jib, but I didn't see any reason we should attack him.  I mean there were a lot of us and one of him.  He traveled on as did we.

That night while at camp, we were attacked again.  What is it with this group?  I mean, really?  Anyway, now the truth was known.  It was Roland.  He is or rather was a Were-Boar.  This was too much, I finally couldn't take it.

I refrain from using spells willy-nilly, but this was deemed necessary.  I was trying to sleep afterall.  My sleep is precious to me.  I need it.  I love it.  I unleashed my fury on him.  We all did.  He died pretty quick.

Afterward, I cast detect magic and found out his ring and cloak were magic.  I didn't care for the cloak though, I just wanted the ring.  It is a ring of protection.  It's wonderful.

Yesterday we rolled into town and found whoever we were looking for and got our cash for those damned eggs.  So now we sit in the town of Eltruel.  Hopefully things will go much better in the future.  

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

The Next Evolution of Our Club

Greetings, folks!

You might have been wondering (or not) where we've been these past weeks.  Like always, we've been hard at work putting things together for you - this time with more of an eye on the future.  Well, the battles grind on...but we're taking a moment to assess ourselves and make improvements.

All games clubs evolve.  Over time, you can find yourself doing things you never thought of just because that's the way things are going.  We've been comfortable with the format of things for a while, as a club.  Yet, the shifts have been both sudden and subtle over the last few years.  Now that the dynamics of and around our tables have changed.

We have more folks on Game Day than any of the game stores around us seem to have at any one time, and are far more involved in the gaming as an entity.  We're a private club - we don't have a storefront (but we do have an eBay) and space is limited - but everyone invited is made to feel like family.  The finance plan of the club has also changed, and the Project Assessment Committee is helping us move forward in a great many ways.  So many, in fact - we've been preparing for weeks on the back-end without many articles.  This is a cardinal sin on our part.

We'll be changing venues as planned in a few weeks, and several changes will occur.  More on these later.  Suffice it to say that for the last three or four years we've been experimenting with a few different options for going forward, and we'll be rolling out more news on this in July and August.  During that time, you may notice strange things happening with the site.  Don't be alarmed, this is just us fiddling with the web.  Things will be back to normal soon - in fact, better than normal.

More importantly, I have another announcement.

Our good buddy and coordinator Skim has stepped up to help out with content and is now co-author on this blog and moderator across the Wargate's social media.   In addition, check out his new blog, where he'll be talking about the meta of gaming.  I look forward to seeing his thoughts on the state of our hobby, industry and other facets of gamer life.

Skim is most certainly a welcome addition to the web-team, he and I have been friends for longer than I can really remember.  It's been at least twenty, and one of the first solid players back in the dimly remembered days of high school.  He's been a frequent co-conspirator over the years and is a big fan of miniature wargames.  We're sure to see a lot of cool stuff from this new level of collaboration, and I for one am very excited.

A new and improved network map will be available this week.  Original images by our art team will replace many on the site as well, so look for a total restructure of this blog and it's nature.  Thanks to everyone on the PAC, and to Skim for helping make it happen.

Now, back to work on the next phase of interdimensional war...

Sunday, July 03, 2016

Hoard of the Dragon Queen (Sessions 4, 5 & 6)

These sessions were originally recorded 05/29, 06/05, and 06/12/2016.

You're Too Fat to Wrestle Me
As told by Hogan Savage, Professional Wrestler

After the whole ordeal in the woods, we went back to the town (I don't remember what it was called) and rested a few days.  I felt much better after a crowd gathered and heard the word of Kord.  I felt the power of Kord-a-mania!

We went back out into the woods (I'm not sure why) but found some more cultists.  They weren't good at playing fair, so we tied the survivor to a tree and left him there.  I tell you what, brother...Kord was with us that night, because a scalawag of a hill giant crept up on us as we slept.  Good thing the watch saw him, and I wrestled a hill giant.  Word.

I'm not really sure what happened, but another night we were attacked by cultists.  We made them regret their decision and interrogated the survivor, but he was mad.  I don't remember what happened to him.

At some point we were told to retrieve some dragon eggs from back at the cultist camp.  So we went back, and Miss Teagan had her dragon scout the encampment.  Not really sure what happened, but got a chance to wrestle some of the guards!  It was all good though - good chaps, really.  They were kinda fat, and I gave them some calisthenics protips.  Then they told me where the army went and where the dragon eggs were.  I let them keep the gold I won from them, just to brighten their day.

Teagan had her little dragon look inside the cave, but everyone was mad at me for some reason.  She said there was a dragon lady and some other guys inside, but not that many.  I'm not sure what the problem was, but they told me it was a bad idea to go talk to her.  I waited a bit, doing jumping jacks in the camp...then they told me they were going to turn me invisible and I had to go get the dragon eggs.  I'm not sure who suggested that - it might have been me.  Well?!  I'm the guy for that kinda job!

I went inside and grabbed the eggs.  No one saw me, but I heard something move once.  Then I left with the eggs.  The others were waiting outside the cave, so I surprised one of the guys with an invisible hug!  He was surprised, but I wasn't invisible anymore.  Then, we said bye to the guards and left.

Saturday, July 02, 2016

Frostgrave Campaign Rules Update

Greetings, folks!

Since our campaign began for Thaw of the Lich Lord, we've found that Frostgrave is a very tight ruleset.  Indeed, each rules question we ran across has been answered in the Errata & FAQ from Osprey Wargames.  We've been playing the game according to the rules as written in the main Rulebook, and there hasn't really been an issue we've seen to cause a problem save one.  Namely, permanent wizard death.

It wouldn't be an issue in an open or long-term campaign, but we've traditionally ran timed campaigns and tracked individual player win / loss records.  It causes an issue when your wizard dies if we're keeping track of certain information (like experience points).  If you're reset to 0 in certain respects, how can you manage to make it up before the end of the campaign?

We decided not to subject anyone else to a 0-sum after I suffered as the club guinea pig for having their wizard killed (R.I.P. Arzoz Maurz, Most Annoying Illusionist).  After casting around on the internet looking to see if anyone else had come to this conclusion, we quickly found that we were not alone.  After examining a few of the rulesets, we've decided to integrate the popular JustPlay Frostgrave Rules Changes wholesale, both Recommended and Optional.  This cleans up all the questions we had very nicely, including giving us a nice structure for the Out-of-Game turns as well.

In addition to these changes, we're adding several official Frostgrave expansions to the ol' chopping block this season:  Sellsword, Dark Alchemy and Hunt for the Golem.  Consider these expansions to be legal in any Wargate campaign where one of the scenarios is listed.  For our current game, these are all legal as of now - including the ability to include Captains in your lists.  Now you can finally make use of that section of the wizard sheet!

As for the smaller campaigns, Dark Alchemy and Hunt for the Golem, the scenarios take their place in the current order as shown on the Frostgrave campaign page.  In addition, Dark Alchemy replaces the potion rules immediately.  The campaigns can generally be undertaken by players as they wish, any limits will be denoted in the season's own campaign rules.

Lots of folks are frothing at the mouth for Frostgrave around these parts!  We'll see a large campaign update this weekend as new combatants enter the fray.  I wonder what level we'll end the season around?  Get your wizard leveled now, and we'll see you on Game Day!