Sunday, November 09, 2014

Decos' Wretched Plight (Session 3)

Ain't Nothin' But Kobold Thang

The Northerners accept Decos' job, and immediately set out to rid the new tunnels of these troublesome pest.  The party quickly arrives at the tunnel entrance and proceed into the strangely bricked hallways that form the ancient tunnels.  Proceeding inside, the party is attacked by and dispatches the welcoming party of kobolds.  They manage to capture three of these, slaying half and capturing the rest.

The Northerners return to town and sell their prisoners.  After talking to the town wizard the party returns to the ancient tunnels.  Moving through the rooms they encounter 4 crazed giant rats!  They quickly dispatch the weak foes, but only to be attacked by the group of 7 kobolds hiding in the next room.  The fight is short, but a great tragedy occurred.  Herek Uthbar had been slain by a kobold's sword!

The party swiftly subdues the remaining foes with a single spell.  The survivors then return their dead companion to Arbora to give him his funeral rites.  Onward to Valhalla, servant of Odin.

Friday, November 07, 2014

The Face of Mystara, Part II (Session 3)

From the Journal of Alexandria Postoak

5:24

The group goes to the Minrothad Guildhouse to try and hire a navigator.




5:28

The guild tells the party that it would be 2000 gold coins to buy a charter and that it would be several months.  Blanith asks the small guild man if there is any way they can expidite the process.  The man's name is Gordo.  He seemed rather interested in the fact that the group is going after the bounty on the captain.

The man tells Blanith that it would be 500 gold extra to expedite the charter, but when Blanith signs the receipt the additional 500 is not on it.  He says he will send the pilot to the group later that night.

5:43

Blanith goes back to his inn and starts to write scrolls, and later Gordon the one legged dwarf pirate shows up and introduces himself as the pilot.

6:22

The group leaves Thyatis to find the captain.  Blanith works closely with Captain Barlowe so he can learn more about sailing.

The wind picks up and pushes back against the ship for a day, which slows the movement.

The ship makes it to the cove to wait for the pirates to arrive.  They must take a lifeboat to research the cove and tells the captain to take the boat out to be less obvious.

6:55

The group decides to wait on the ship and watch for the other ship.  Captain Barlowe advises that he sees the other ship sailing toward The Drake.

7:05

The ship that we see is larger.  The other ship is at least twice as large as ours.  There is a call from the crow's nest, "They have a ram!".  Oliver casts Bless on the party and it is quickly followed by Blanith casting Haste.  We all then ready our weapoins and hope for the best.

7:21

Something flies towards us from the enemy ship, and there is a cry on-deck of "Catapult!".  The order to fire at will is given, and our ballistae hit the enemy ship.  The ships meet and we begin to grapple each other.  The ship is bedecked in Alphatian gear.

7:40

The crews begin to fight.  Blanith puts part of the enemy crew to Sleep.  One of the pirates is killed by Alexandra, and Oliver cast Hold Person on some of their other crew.  Nine enemy pirates board our ship and one guy jumps with superhuman skill all the way to the center of our deck to attack Methra.  She is unlucky on the second hit and dies.  Her body falls into the ocean, and is lost.

8:17

Most of the other crew is in a Web or put to Sleep.  Warwick, Alexandra, Utho, Blanith and Todd have boarded the enemy ship.

8:36

The ones that boarded the ship defeat the remaining pirates on the Sea Heifer.  We tie up the crew that is still under a Sleep spell.  Barlowe uses a stick and makes the webbed fighter to surrender.  Our crew goes through the Sea Heifer finds a fair amount of treasure and the box with a silver marking.

We decide to sail the Sea Heifer and tow our boat behind.  We tie the pirates up and watch them in the hold.  We try and question the pirate captain...

...but the interrogation fails, and Todd broke his leg - an injury which led to Kronk's death.

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Introduction to Miniature Painting, Lesson 3

Our 10-part introduction to miniature painting continues this week with our last session.  Our students are starting to churn out some really nice stuff for the club!  By the time this is over, they will have lots of practice under their belts - enough to get some of those nice Wargate commissions!

Lesson 3 - Ink Washes

An ink is a heavy pigment in a thin medium that has the consistency of water.  Since ink contains heavy pigment, it tends to gather in the recesses of the model, shading it (making it darker). There are numerous techniques to using inks, but today we're just going to introduce them into our repertoire by examining a very basic technique:  washing.

Are those dogs?
To perform an ink wash on a model, simply brush the ink over the entire model.  It will shade the figure, as well as provide a color hue.  Even though ink gathers in the recessed portions of the model, a color tint can will left on the raised portions as well depending on how many coats of ink were applied.  You can also apply ink to only certain portions of a model, shading it and changing the hue as needed.

On one set of models, we used a light ink over the entire model, followed by a darker ink over the main body.  This produced a nice, natural transition in tone for the simple models we were using.  By leaving the face, paws and tail alone during the application of the dark coat we see an instant and very fetching effect occur.

You can darken an ink by applying it in multiple layers.  Like all paints, make sure the first layer is dry before applying the second.  The lighter rats below were simply inked a second time, leaving the face, paws and tail alone as before.  The natural looking gradient is very easy to achieve, and with time and practice this will become second nature.

No such luck.  Those are giant rats - because of course they are.
Like all the models we're painting during this class, we'll be showing the completed project off in our Gallery section ASAP.  Lots of great stuff coming up for the galleries, for all categories.  We've got a lot to show off, so our next photo session is going to be swamped!

One last thing:  this is the Wargate's three-hundredth post!  March 13th, 2010 we launched this new blog, and it's been an absolute pleasure to have been with  you this long.  In just a few months, we'll be a full five years old at this location, with this name.  I want to send a huge, heartfelt thank you to all our Gatekeepers for all for your hard work and support for the last four and a half years.

It looks like we'll be around for quite some time, barring any incidents involving monsters or swords (or other implements of destruction).  With so many things coming up, we're not going to just evaporate - the Wargate is only growing stronger.  So, with that I'll just say one more thing:  it's good to feel loved!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Articulations from Arthur - Alignment Change

King Arthur returns from all sorts of misadventure across Mystara, as both a DM and a player.  He wanted to share this with everyone, after some of those hijinks nearly introduced him to the TPK.  As his discovery of gaming in general is really just beginning, it will be interesting to see what he has to say from time to time - to give us old, crotchety folk a fresh perspective that is unburdened with expectation or nostalgia.



In my budding experience, I have encountered an alignment change.  This particular change of heart was forced upon me, for allowing entangled and sleeping enemies to be effortlessly dispatched by a fellow member of my adventuring party.  How wrong of me……

Now then!  Being chaotic is awesome!  All these nitty witty do-gooders and their lawful ways are just such a tedious bunch to fit in with.  Experiencing the change in my alignment, I did take it upon myself to fully enjoy a change to more diabolic demeanor.  The party, who has yet to accept my character anyhow, is now composed of only my targets!

At least, they would have been had they not led me to suffer heavy damage and initially instill a raving insanity within me.  This in turn gave me the perfect excuse to stab a fellow through his heart and take his potion.  Then to make my lil’ devilish plot all the better, the potion made me fly!   I took my leave of these doomed adventurers and flew all the way back home!

You should never trust an evil thief, you silly adventuring companions!  I do give you my thanks though, for the short lived, but highly enjoyable, Dungeons and Dragons session.

King Arthur,
The Jubilant and Carefree