Thursday, April 30, 2020

Stonehell: a-maze-ing adventures!

A special retro post today. It was pointed out to me by one of my players that I somehow missed posting this session report! Thankfully I have them all in one big google doc. Enjoy!

Session 73 was played on 7/22

Eiric, wizard 7 (Kat)
- men at arms (Alias the Elf, Eddard “Sunny Jim”)
Brie, wizard 4 (Apprentice to Eiric)
A-A-Ron, Thief 6 (Henchman)
Daryll, Cleric 6 (Henchman)
Orpheus, Human Fighter 6 (Henchman)
Karl, Dwarf 7 (Julia)
- Hobart (dog)
- men at arms (Modar)
Lex the Cheeseman, Fighter 4 (Henchman)
Koltic, Cleric 3 (Chris)
- men at arms (Medrick)

Still in the maze, the party decides that the remaining glowing runes need to be checked. A-A Ron disappears and Medrick ends up crushed by a falling block, Then Karl reappears, loaded down with treasure. Koltic’s rune opens the maze doors. And Eiric and the rest of the party come in and Eiric sobs at the death of A-A-Ron, and gathers some of the dust from the spot where he vanished. A-A-Ron returns a few minutes later, also with treasure. Eiric again cries with relief. Deciding that that’s enough of that, the party opts to return to town.

Getting out of the dungeon isn’t easy, and they stumble on a squad of heartless, who scare Brie, A-A-Ron, Koltic, and Mordar who all run. Rather than face the heartless, the rest of the party chases after them. While running they’re set upon by 2 spectres. Daryll turns one, and the other is chopped down by Orpheus and Lex.

Almost out of the dungeon, they’re then swarmed by over a dozen giant rats, and while they take several minor bites, no one suffers any lasting illness.

Back in town, the sword and other magics are identified. A-A-Ron takes the sword Slider from Karl, and the sword is happier with the change. Among the treasures recovered was a map to a new section of the dungeon…

Eiric and Brie study the runes from the spell chambers, continue their research on developing the spell Darkvision, and go shopping for some real estate.

Gains: Coinage, map, and a scroll
Kills: Giant Rats, Spectres

Friday, April 24, 2020

Stonehell: Roc and a Hard Place

Session 124 was played on 2/23

Borumar, Thief 7 (Josh)
Joho, Mystic 5 (Chris)
Daton, Fighter 1 (Jay)
Alwin, Elf 1 (Robert)
Men at Arms - Janus
Torchbearers - Rolestad
Wardog - Captain Morgan
Elwood, Cleric 1 (NPC)

In town, Joho finds a sage who specializes in Cockatrices, and gets the run down on them, and purchases a scroll of Flesh to Stone.

The party gears up and heads to the side dungeon, looking to explore some more, and quickly run into a trio of wights. Elwood drops quickly in the fight, followed by Janus, but then the wights are dropped. Elwood has a healing potion forced down his throat, but Janus is gone. The wights had some treasure, both coins, gems, and magic!

Deciding they’d recovered enough to make it worth heading back to town, they departed the dungeon, and hit the road…

But then a shadow passed overhead. The dragon? No! A giant bird swooping down. With barely any time to react, Daton tosses a javelin, striking a mighty blow, but not enough to stop it from grabbing Borumar and pulling him into the sky! Borumar struggles in the bird's grip, pulling his bow around and firing a magical arrow point blank, killing the bird… 90 feet up.

Somehow he survived the fall. Crashing through numerous branches slowed his fall… After recovering himself, Borumar activated his magical elephant and the party returns to the city not only with the treasure from the dungeon, but with the carcass of the young roc!

In town, Daton threw a wild garden party, at which he was challenged to a duel by Braxton the claw to avenge her brother’s honor. Daton assured her that she has the wrong person, but she refused to back down, and in the brief duel, she was quickly cut down.

Gains: Coins, gems, and magic!
Kills: Roc, Wights
Losses: Janus

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Retro Review: The Phantom Menace

I recently got Disney+, because why not. We're living in a pandemic, and it isn't like I can go out for a fun night on the town. And they've got the Star Wars movies, and since I'm going to be stuck inside for a while, why not watch them all? It's been a long time since I've seen most of them, especially the prequels, even though I listen to the soundtracks pretty often.

So, Episode I:

The Phantom Menace.

Everyone remembers how bad this is, right?

Well... maybe not as bad as you remember.

And look, I'm not saying it's GOOD. It has some good stuff in it, but... a trade blockade? Senate maneuverings? This isn't exactly exciting stuff to be basing an action adventure movie around. And yes, the performances are a little wooden, and the dialogue is kinda painful, and yes midichlorians.

We don't even need to get into the racism. Others have covered it way better than I ever could.

I get it. I could honestly fill several blog posts with criticism. But it's all been said, and it all overshadows the fact that there is a lot to enjoy in The Phantom Menace.

You get some amazing jedi action, fun call backs to the original trilogy, the pod race is actually kinda fun, and the music is amazing. Droid armies are cool, getting to see Coruscant, bounty hunters, death sticks, air speeders, the jedi council, slightly younger yoda, Darth Maul!! While criminally under utilized, Darth Maul was great, and anyone who says they didn't want a double ended lightsaber is LYING.

I really do with that George Lucas could have had someone on staff to help clean it up though, and maybe someone else direct it.

It was also built up with such hype that it couldn't have ever lived up to it. Look at what happened with Episodes 7-9.

Episode 1 isn't a great Star Wars movie... but it's an okay one. Give it another shot when you get the chance. There's some stuff to celebrate.

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Stonehell: Swamp Gas.... again...

Session 123 was played on 2/16

Joho, Mystic 5 (Chris)
Faerindril , Elf 2 (Jeff)
Daton, Fighter 1 (Jay)
Men at Arms - Halghild, Janus
Torchbearers - Rolestad
Wardog - Captain Morgan
Elwood, Cleric 1 (NPC)

Entering the reptile house, the party investigated several chambers before coming to a room with 3 angry and aggressive toads. The creatures were quickly but noisily dispatched. The fight attracted the attention of some equally angry and aggressive berzerkers. 2 were killed, and 1 charmed by Faerendril. The party, with their new barbarian friend, continues exploring.

"There's a note on the map for that door... can anyone read that?"

Then they opened the swamp gas door… Faerendril dies. Joho, Daton, and the barbarian cough themselves bloody, but survive.

The party flees back to town.

Gains: minor coinage
Kills: 3 toads, 2 berzerkers
Losses: Faerindril

Friday, April 10, 2020


Sometimes I find that I'm just not in the mood to work on whatever it is that's on my tray, and I just want something silly and fun and simple that I can knock together in an evening. Wednesday night was one of those nights. I'm in the middle... near the end of a big project that I haven't showed off yet, and I just knew that if I tried to work on it, I'd mess it up. So I went digging, figuring I'd paint up something stupidly simple. A terrain bit or something. And then I saw it...

4Ground Thunder Box Privies.

This simple little kit will work well in any village. I only had one frame (2 outhouses) and I decided that since they come with one that can be broken and one intact (or they can be built together each with broken bits) that I'd make one completely intact one, and another that's almost totally ruined.

Following the instructions was easy, and the bits fit together without too much fuss. After I'd done the major assembly, I decided that the ruined one needed its own base, and a lot more rubble. Using the frame, I chopped out a bunch more sticks and chunks... Honestly, there's way more ruined bits than could have come from the outhouse. I like it though.

They're supposed to be "pre-painted" according to the site, but I'm going to repaint them. Also still need to do basing for the ruined one. Tempted to have a bush growing out of the hole...

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Stonehell: A whiter shade of pale

Session 122 was played on 2/9

Borumar, ½ Orc Thief 7 (Josh)
Joho, Mystic 5 (Chris)
Faerindril , Elf 2 (Jeff)
Daton, Fighter 1 (Jay)
Elwin, Elf 1 (Robert)
Men at Arms - Halghild, Janus
Torchbearers - Rolestad
Wardog - Captain Morgan
Elwood, Cleric 1 (NPC)

Returning to the Asylum the party spends some time investigating the stick figures that are now animated. Little that the party did seemed to have much effect.

Moving in, they begin investigating various chambers, including one decorated with a large variety of humanoid bones, including a chandelier made of skulls. While investigating it, the chandelier crashes to the ground, sending skulls bouncing all over the room.

Investigating around where “spear trap” was marked on their map, they explore around and come to an odd sight… a small stream flowing through a room, with a low hill on one side covered with mushrooms. Next to the stream was a small fire pit, cast iron frying pan, and a bowl of eggs. The mushrooms urged everyone to grab a seat and make a mushroom omelette. Joho skips the eggs, and just nibbles on one of the mushrooms.

He feels kinda relaxed, and hears some music. The rest of the party waves goodbye to the mushrooms, and drags Joho away.

The next room they come to, they find some fairies drinking in an old store room. The fairies hide (badly) and the rest of the party just ignores them while searching the room, finding a peg leg, and 4 left shoes.

Further down the hall, they hear weird animal noises, and the smell of musk fills the air. Quickly peeking through the door, they see an orgy of fey creatures. The party NOPES away from that.

Through another door they find a wooded glade, with a small cabin. The sky was clear, and the stars sparkled. Candle light spilled through the window. Faerendril looked through the window, just as the door opened and a young woman stepped out, yelling about the pervert trespassing on her property. She tells everyone to get out and not come back without a proper gift.

The next chamber they come to has a well, and as the party pokes around, an arm of water comes out and whips the party, but the party’s few magic weapons seem to kill it. In the well, they collect some gold and a rusted dagger.

Another door opens into a mountain top where a blizzard seemed to be blowing. They quickly shoved the door shut.

Deciding the Asylum was crazy enough, they headed for the Reptile House...

Gains: 200gp
Kills: Water Weird

Sunday, April 5, 2020

Happy First Contact Day!

While I haven't written a review, I have finished Star Trek Picard, and it was great!

And because we're all stuck inside, I'm gonna let you in on a little secret. You can watch it all for free! CBS All Access is available for free for the next 2 months! Go check it out!

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

March in Review: Pandemic Edition

So a global pandemic has an impressive way of derailing things, doesn't it? I suppose the biggest changes are that I'm working from home on a shortened schedule, and the CPA exam was canceled. As you can imagine, this has created some extra time in my schedule, and because I wasn't doing a great job of handling the stress of the exam on top of everything else going on, I've hit pause on my studies. To that end, I've actually gotten in some hobby time.

Thankfully Stonehell has been a virtual game since I moved to NYC, so things have continued there. I'm behind on my session reports, and we've added an extra session for the duration of the pandemic. Plus some of the players who dropped out because of life, suddenly find themselves with free time, and have rejoined! That's right, Karl and Kili are back!

Expect a bunch of session reports this upcoming month!

Oh, there have been some minis painted! Rats, witches, plague doctors, and a ranger of shadow deep! And more coming... I need to write up posts on them. Part one on the witches is already up.

Aside from them, I just got on what's up for the project after next.

That's right, I ordered some 3D printed ships for Battlefleet Gothic!

But before I get to them, I'm going to be working on converting Kornovik the Outcast from Frostgrave Forgotten Pacts.

I don't have this mini, so I'm making him!


Star Trek Picard just wrapped up season 1, and it was GOOD! I'm very happy with it. It wasn't perfect, and I have a few quibbles, but overall I'm happy.
The Winners - a chinese movie about a bank robbery. Very funny and sweet.

Delta Rae released The Light, which just charted at #45 on the Billboard alternative chart. Definitely worth the listen, especially when things seem so dark.
Dropkick Murphys did a livestream concert on St. Patrick's Day - Streaming Up From Boston.

Survive the global pandemic
Post more
Convert and paint Kornovik
Work on my new BFG ships.