Monday, December 26, 2022

#Dungeon23 Dry Run Week 1

A week ago I decided to do a dry run at #Dungeon23. I have no idea if I'll include this little 14 room dungeon in my megadungeon, or add it to Stonehell, or what, but as I've completed the first week, I wanted to share it.

Welcome to the Poisonous Vaults

1. Stairs down open up to a massive fountain that dominates the north side of the room. Serpents & snakemen hiss a harmless water mist that blankets the floor 1' deep in concealing mist.

2. Sloping passage down to storage room. North side piled 10' high w/ precariously stacked rotted worthless crates. Dry well in the SE corner drops down a little over 100'. Secret door is trapped with poison gas. Save or take 2d4 Con damage (heals @ 1pt/day)

2A. Secret stash. 1000gp, 10 bottles of wine (10gp each) 7 gems (100gp each). Rotted food and travel clothing.

3. A pair of Medusa polish the copper serpent lamps and duct work (500gp value if carefully removed). All gates are locked. Stairs down to next week's level. The polish is caustic (as oil).

4. Copper lamps continue from 3. 1 not working. West side has dais with hooded cobra backed throne. Non working lamp has a 7,000gp gem wedged in the pipe. Removing it & not relighting the lamp will fill the room with gas. In 3d4 rounds will explode as fireball

5. Beyond the locked door is an area of magical darkness. 2 gargoyles flank the door. They hate the Medusa and will give the treasure away if given one of the Medusa heads. Along the N wall is an empty wine rack save for an ebony scepter wrapped with a gold serpent and topped by a goose egg sized polished garnet (900gp). The SW quarter of the room contains destroyed rugs, floor pillows, and couches.

6. A Medusa and her pet giant rattler are playing with a blinded giant rat. The rat has already been bitten and will die in 1d6 turns. The Medusa has a pouch with 76ep.

7. Blinded giant rats (14) pick at the torso of an orc. The petrified legs are leaning in the NW corner.

Sunday, December 25, 2022

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you peace and joy this holiday season, and a stocking full of toys!

Tuesday, December 20, 2022

Stonehell: Mines out of Time pt 2

Session 189 was played on 2/11.

Morgana, Mage 8 (Rob)
Joho, Mystic, 7 (Chris)
Koltic, Cleric 6 (NPC)
Biffin, Fighter 7 (NPC)
Aroon, Fighter 4 (NPC)
Jameth, Fighter 4 (NPC)
Lor’Koth, Dwarf 5 (NPC)
Rada, Thief 3 (NPC)
Barcox, Fighter 1 (NPC)

Having retrieved the magic hammer, they head back north, encountering a variety of undead and defeating them, pressing on. They eventually make it to an armory, finding a few usable items that got shared around the party, and a couple of magic items! Biffin ended up with the Ravenblade, Barcox with the Rainbow Blade, and Aroon got an ax of accuracy.  Morgana uses her Picture spell to take a selfie.

Backtracking they encounter a wraith that drops Rada and Barcox. Rada’s body is dragged away, but Barcox is left behind. They come to a foundry full of undead, and a massive reptilian creature with 4 arms and a horn on its snout. It pulled a blast of purple flame from the smelter and launched it at them. Knowing they hadn’t broken the stele, Morgana tried Dimension Lock on it, but the spell failed. 

The party keeps moving, trying to avoid the blasts and claws of K’Taulut, smashing their way through some more undead. They finally find the Stele and Lorkoth jumps into the pit where it sits and begins to wail on it. Morgana tosses up a wall of ice to give them time. Lorkoth finally cracks the stele open just before K’Taulut smashed through the ice. It then took a lightning bolt to the face. A wave of energy washes over everyone, and they find their equipment returned.

Working their way back to the smeltery they destroy some more undead, collect the gold ingots, and Morgana summons a Giant Slug to clean up any other undead lurking around that they missed, and head for home.

Gains: Gold ingots, 2 magic swords, 1 magic ax,
Kills: Ore Skeletons, Skeletons, Pitmen, Wraiths, Wights, Zombies K’Taulut the Primordial
Losses: Rada, Barcox

Saturday, December 10, 2022


Sean McCoy came up with an idea, a dungeon room a day, for a year. At the end of the year, you've got a 12 level, 365 room megadungeon. He posted this on Twitter, and it took off. He then wrote up a blog post about it here.

And as I love a good megadungeon, and can use a good kick in the pants to get posting more regularly, I'm joining in! I've even got my notebook all set up. 


 And the plan is as follows:

  • 1 Room per day (or small group of rooms)
  • 1 Section per week - and one blog post about it 
  • 1 Level per month

I'll be using the Tomb of Adventure Design and the Dungeon Alphabet for inspiration, and leaning toward Old School Essentials/Rules Cyclopedia as the rules set

Since it's going to be largely unplanned, I'm going to make a number of connection points early on that won't be identified until later. 

As for the maps, I'm considering a number of options, from dice drop maps to whatever I can doodle out to reusing some maps I've drawn but never did anything else with before. I'll probably end up doing a mix by year's end. 

The most exciting part about this is that it feels like that collaborative creative rush we used to have back on G+! I think I might start early, do a practice run before starting the project in the new year.

Thursday, December 1, 2022

November ‘22 In Review

It is a time to be thankful, and there’s a lot to be thankful for. My family and friends are all healthy and safe. I have a good job that does good work. I have a house, space and some time for games and hobbies. I have a wife who encourages me to do these things that bring me joy. Hell, she even took care of our toddler for a weekend so I could head back to Maryland to go collect a bunch of my stuff that’s been in storage since I moved to NY! And now I have my whole RPG library back!

Over Thanksgiving break one of my D&D players was in town, and we got to play 2 games of Stargrave together! Stonehell has also been rolling along, and you might have noticed I finally got back into writing session reports. More are on the way!  

You know those projects that you start on and then sit on for… a long time? Well, I finally wrapped one of those up. A 3D printed statue that I got years ago. The print lines on it were fairly bad, and it was demotivating. Well, I finally got back to it. After a liberal coat of glue and sand, the texture was transformed from 3D print to rough stone. Add in a couple of nail art gems and some paint, and it’s looking good!

I also worked on a few other fun things this month, including a chicken swarm, which may be the silliest mini in my collection.

Star Wars Tales of the Jedi
Star Trek Prodigy
Bad Batch
Your Highness

1 session report written up per week. At least that way I won’t fall further behind.
Play the next solo Stargrave adventure
Finish all my current WIP minis

Wednesday, November 23, 2022

Stonehell: Mines out of Time

 Session 188 was played on 2/6

Morgana, Mage 8 (Rob)
Joho, Mystic, 7 (Chris)
Koltic, Cleric 6 (NPC)
Biffin, Fighter 7 (NPC)
Aroon, Fighter 4 (NPC)
Jameth, Fighter 4 (NPC)
Lor’Koth, Dwarf 5 (NPC)
Rada, Thief 3 (NPC)
Thunder, Dwarf 1 (NPC)
Barcox, Fighter 1 (NPC)

Koltic spends his time back in town getting drunk and brewing potions… among other things. Morgana researches gate rituals. Joho hires some likely recruits, Thunder the Dwarf and Barcox the Fighter.

Heading into the dungeon they pass through the main entrance, through the Quiet Halls where Kolic dusts some skeletons. From there they head down to the 5th level without further incident. Exploring an unmapped mineshaft, they pass by words of warning against entering the mines. They ignore the warnings and enter anyway…  promptly blacking out.

When they come to, they’re dressed in rags with only some old mining equipment to share among them, and a group of skeletons to fight. Tough mineral encrusted skeletons. They defeat them, Koltic managing to destroy 4/5, while Jojo smashes one apart. Not knowing which way to go, they head out in a random direction. And promptly black out.

When they come to, they’re dressed in rags with only some old mining equipment to share among them, and a group of skeletons to fight. Tough mineral encrusted skeletons. They defeat them, and then head off in a different direction.

They explore the mines further, battling more undead. Thundar drops in a tough fight and they have to abandon him and run away to regroup. They encounter a glitchy but friendly ghost who tells them of a primordial being locked in a stele within the mine, and a weapon that might destroy him. Following the ghost’s glitchy directions, they head in what they think is the right direction, and promptly pass out.

When they come to, they’re dressed in rags with only some old mining equipment to share among them, and a group of skeletons to fight. Tough mineral encrusted skeletons. They defeat them, noticing that their spells and wounds aren’t resetting while everything else (including all the undead) are. They follow the ghost’s directions again, avoiding the path that reset them, and find a shrine devoted to the dwarven god of mines. A large silver hammer on the wall serves as the holy symbol, and according to the ghost, the means of destroying the evil that has them trapped in the mines out of time.  

Gains: Magic Hammer
Kills: Ore Skeletons, Skeletons, Pitmen, Wraiths, Wights, Zombies
Losses: Thundar

Tuesday, November 22, 2022

Stargrave Quarantine 37: Hydroponics Bay Bugs!

Captain's Log: The bastard said the station was abandoned. He didn't say anything about the bugs.Or that he'd sold the same info to my former fellow marine...

The stations life support systems were limping along, helped in part by the extensive hydroponics bay. From what our initial scans showed, there was salvage worth making the trip. We worked our way deeper into the station, leaving the ship with the engine idling so we could make a quick escape if we needed to. Scanners showed movement, and we went to investigate. Once in the hydroponics bay, we heard from the far side the unmistakable sounds of people talking, but scanners showed more... And soon enough we spotted the bugs.


 While we faced a number of the acid spewing bugs, my competition and his crew ended up facing the nastier warrior bugs that tore into and through his troop. Having grabbed a single treasure token, what was left of his force made for the doors. 

On my side of the hydroponics bay, concentrated crossfire kept the acid spewers from causing too much pain, while the rest of the treasures were secured. 

And not wanting to overstay our welcome, we headed for the station transit line.

Just these few pics as I was too into playing with another person for the first time in years to worry about snapping pics every turn. Needless to say, I had a blast.And getting to pull out my old nids and the aquarium plants I'd picked up right before COVID hit was a big bonus. I used the same crew as in my solo game (but not counting any of the XP I'd earned there.

Friday, November 4, 2022

Stargrave: Hope Eternal Mission 1 Access Codes

 It has been literally years since I last played Frostgrave, and until just this week, had never gotten the chance to play Stargrave. Something about moving away from my gaming group, and then a pandemic, plus the addition of a baby to the household just made mini gaming take a back seat to everything else. Thankfully, with the pandemic in mind, Joseph McCullough decided to release a solo Stargrave supplement called Hope Eternal. (He'd previous released a solo game akin to Frostgrave called Rangers of Shadowdeep, which I have, but have yet to play...) On Halloween, I decided to treat myself and play the first mission. 

I set up the board as the mission suggests, complete with a large central building, except my central building wasn't big enough. So I took a square of cardboard and set it to the side to serve as the interior of the building. 

Then I pulled out my minis and assembled a crew!

As Captain, I picked Sgt. Stone, clearly a vet in heavy armor.
1st officer, Decker the Tecker
Saw the Case Cracker
Dino the Commando
Trooper the Trooper
Rocket the Code Breaker
Jyn the Runner
Mr. Fixit the Gobbo Chisler
Troll the Gunner
And Blob the Recruit

Their mission? To break into a secure facility and retrieve some access codes. The crew infiltrated the settlement, avoiding the goons patrolling the streets.

The captain and first mate each took one side of the main building while everyone else milled about as convincingly as possible. The captain brazenly walked up, dropped a bag of credits into the guard's hand, and said he had an appointment, and the guard took the loot and opened the door for him (Nat 20!) Decker fails to open the door on his side of the building, but it turns out to be less important as the Captain's side held the data center. Saw moves in and immediately tries to hack the system, but fails. The guards are now on alert, and more ruffians enter the board. 


The Captain moves into the building and unlocks the computer (did someone give him the passcodes?) Saw and the guards trade gunfire. Decker again fails to open the other door, but the ruffians in the street are now aware of whats up, and firefights break out all over the neighborhood. Trooper and Blob are both hit, Blob is wounded. Troll takes out one ruffian with his big gun. Amazingly no additional forces enter the board.

Cap and Saw take pot shots at the guards in the building as they run for the street. Decker takes out an injured ruffian, while Saw takes shots from multiple directions and goes down. Gobbo and Blob run off, while Trooper kills another ruffian. 2 more ruffians enter the board.

Cap tries to launch a grenade on a clustered group of ruffians, but misses. Decker and Dino give up on the door and run for it. Trooper gets shot up, but makes it off the board. Jyn kills a ruffian and she and Troll run off the board. 4 more ruffians enter the board. 

Cap sends another grenade off wildly, and books it off the board with the access codes. 

Saw manages to survive, but is badly injured. The crew earned 300 credits, and the captain 170xp. 

Next Mission: The Great Cardboard Maglev Robbery

Tuesday, November 1, 2022

October‘22 In Review

Started the month with Hurricane Ian hitting us. Well, it wasn’t a hurricane when it finally got up here, but it was still 4+ days of rain and gusty winds which revealed a leaky spot in the roof, and caused some minor flooding in the basement. Gonna need to rethink my plans for floor to ceiling bookshelves. There’s also a small roof leak that needed tending too. Both of these sucked up far too much of my time. Getting ready for Halloween took up the rest of it.

I picked up a 5’ skeleton to start things off, then decided to make some tombstones for the front yard. Nothing too complex, or expensive, this year. Just some simple shipping boxes with monster mud and paint. Due to not having any tools, not even a simple chip brush, this still required several trips to the hardware store, but I’ll detail that in another post. In the end I finished 8 tombstones. Next year I think I’m going to add another skeleton, and maybe a scarecrow. Thinking about going fancy and having the head light up… but I’ve got 364 days to figure it out.  

My Stonehell game continues along. Almost had a TPK on a little demon infested side dungeon. The big news though is that I got to play Stargrave! Hope Eternal, the newest supplement was just released, and it’s an entire solo campaign. I only played the first scenario, but it was so much fun to get minis on the table. 

Solid progress this month. Painted a bunch of spooky minis, and have a bunch more picked out to work on for November.

3 painted armored skeleton minis. 2 with swords, 1 with an ax

3 grave minions, small humaniods with pumpkin heads in vaguely early 1700's style clothing)

Star Trek Voyager (season 4)
Lower Decks
She Hulk
Hocus Pocus 2
Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
Rocky Horror Picture Show
Mr. Boogedy
Little Shop of Horrors
Young Frankenstein
Ghosts (eps 1-6)

Play more Stargrave, and get some session reports written up.

Tuesday, October 4, 2022

September ‘22 In Review

Time flies. As much as I love and look forward to October, I’m not actually ready for it to BE October. Yet, here we are. Last month was a busy one at work, plus taking care of home improvement projects, as well as the usual just day to day week to week things that need doing. I didn't have time for a game of Stargrave, but I did paint a bunch of terrain for it (or Frostgrave) and the table is set up and ready to go.


My players have just about cleared the 5th level of Stonehell, having wiped out the mountain trolls. Now just to face the dragon. The question is, will they, or will they go back up to level 2 and deal with the unseelie fey on levels 1 & 2


Semi-productive month. Wrapped up a number of projects that had been lingering, including the squad of Blackstar Corsairs, the froghemoth, and some big terrain pieces. And of course the obligatory kobold.


Star Trek Voyager (season 3)
What We Do In The Shadows (season 3 & 4)
Star Trek Lower Decks
She Hulk
Hocus Pocus 2


Play a single game of Stargrave, get at least 1 session report written a week, paint some fun halloween themed minis.

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

A Monograph on the Infernal Lesser Prince Morax the Profane

A while back I created a demon infested manor for my players to clear out and use as their new base of operations. Wanting a little more than murder-hobo smash and grab, I decided to try to tempt them. What else from a demonic intelligence that really wants to be free to cause chaos in the mortal realm? And how best to tempt a wizard desperate to hit 9th level? With magical (demonic) power of course! 

Sadly they sent the demon back to hell, and destroyed the Monograph.  

Well, they destroyed one copy of The Monograph. Others are out there. Maybe there's one in your game?

A Monograph on the Infernal Lesser Prince Morax the Profane
Composed by The Grand Archmage Idreforn, Court Wizard of the High King Aerokos

This tome radiates a faint necromantic/infernal magical aura when examined. The red leather of the covers is well worn, but the brass clasps shine as if freshly polished. The title on the spine glows dimly. Within, the pages are written both in an ancient common and magical script, depending on the section.

The first half of the volume covers who and what Prince Morax is, and his various evil deeds across both the world and as a general in the great wars in hell. It also describes the occasions the demon has been summoned and bent to the will of various demonologists, and how each time he’s been cast back into hell by the destruction of the crystal skull used to bind him. There is an extensive section detailing the various powers Morax is known to have used.

The second half of the volume concerns the ritual used to summon the demon, and the means to create the crystal skull that will bind him to the will of whoever holds the skull.  

The study of this book requires a magic-user or cleric to study it for at least a week before they can attempt to fully understand the magics within. During this week, 3 Int/Wis checks must be made.

Check 1 - The Lore
Failed Check - Deciphering the text requires an extra week.
Passed Check - The reader gains a comprehensive knowledge of Morax
Passed +5 - The reader has an intimate knowledge of Morax, and gains a +2 to the next check.
Passed +10 - as above, but the reader also picks up on the fact that there’s too much detailed info in the book.

Check 2 - The Ritual
Failed check - There is a flaw in the reader’s understanding. There is a 50/50 chance of the ritual simply failing or opening a portal to hell.
Passed check - the reader can successfully follow the instructions to summon Morax.
Passed +5 - As above, but the reader can also use the summoning circle to contain Morax.
Passed +10 - As above, and the reader knows that the summoning is a permanent effect (and how to reverse the ritual to send Morax back to hell)

Check 3 - The Binding

Failed Check - The reader has a (likely fatal) misunderstanding of how the binding skull works. Attempts to create it or utilize one already in existence suffer a -2 to their check.
Passed check - The reader understands how to create and use the binding skull
Passed +5 - the reader gains a +2 to their rolls to create & use the skull
Passed +10 - The reader understands that destruction of the skull frees Moxon, doesn’t banish him.

Controlling Molar with the skull

Bending a demon prince (even a lesser one) to one's will is a difficult task. Morax has a willpower score of 28. Anyone using the skull must add their Intelligence & Wisdom scores, plus half their level (rounded down). If the score is less than 28, Morax takes control of them as if under the effect of a Charm Person spell (no save). A tie score allows Morax a save for every task assigned to him. Beating his score increases the duration between saves to 1 day for every point his power score is beaten by.

Monday, September 12, 2022

Mudgullet the Froghemoth Part 2

 Part 1 can be found here

I finally finished this monster of a mini. Not shown are the various layers of sand and gravel that were used to cover the edge of the base that wasn't covered by the included textured base. I then slathered a craft paint brown over most of it, and then used a variety of earthy browns from Reaper over it to give it some variation. The rocks were painted with greys, nothing fancy. The eggs I wanted to be a little more fancy, so I painted them with marine teal and ghostly moss, and gave each one a little dot of walnut brown.

Then it was time to flock it. 

Using Secret Weapon's water effects I painted over the eggs to make them look freshly laid. And I dribbled some more around the eggs to pool in the low spots between them, and dribbling down toward the edge. 

I think there are 5 or 6 different types of flock and static grass that I covered the base with. 

And here it is in all it's glory! Like most large minis this ended up being something of a slog, but I'm pleased with the results. 
Now I just need to get my gamers together to drop this on the table and watch them fight it! Of course that also means getting some stats worked up...

Sunday, September 11, 2022

13 years old!

I haven't marked the day in a couple of years, but yesterday was my 13th blogiversary. 

Go me!

It's interesting that this has kept on, even though at this point too many of my posts are the monthly wrap ups, and not nearly enough of them are session reports or new content. And I have ideas for new content stuff, and things from game that I want to share, but with a toddler in the house, finding the time has been hard. That's part of the reason this is a day late in fact. 

I don't foresee any big changes to things here at the Tower anytime in the near term. Likely you will be seeing more of the same, though I do want to keep posting some of the new characters I've been coming up with. 

 Anyway, happy blogiversary to me! Here's to another productive year!

Thursday, September 8, 2022

Happy Star Trek Day


This is truly a golden age for Star Trek. We have so many new shows to enjoy, great loving diverse casts who are all thrilled to be a part of it, and creators who clearly get what Star Trek is about. 

Today, starting at 3pm eastern, 12 pacific, you can watch the day's events at

Saturday, September 3, 2022

August ‘22 in Review

One of my goals for the month was to play a game of Stargrave. Sadly that didn't happen. However I got a lot closer to it than I have in a long while. I got as far as finding the rulebook, getting some terrain ready, and picking out some minis. I even got the primed terrain on the table to see if I had what I needed for a game. I do. And then I went and bought some craft paints to paint the terrain (as I'm not going to use my expensive Reaper paints for a table's worth of terrain).

As I wrote above, no Stargrave, but there has been some Stonehell and Rappan Athuk gaming! I really need to catch up on session reports, but finding time is just hard to do. Life with a toddler means that there's only an hour or two a day that's available for my various interests, and a lot of evenings there just isn't the energy for creative activities. 

A decently productive month. My kobold horde continues to grow as I make my way through the many many kobolds I've gotten the last several Bones Kickstarters. I also painted another dragon, though this one was rather non-standard, a plant dragon. Honestly if it wasn't labeled "plant dragon" I'd probably just call it a plant monster.

How do I manage to get as much painting done when I just said a bit ago there isn't time/energy for creative activities? I take half my lunch break and paint. Not every day, but even 3 times a week can add up.

Star Trek Voyager (season 2)
What We Do In The Shadows (season 1 & 2)
Lower Decks
She Hulk

Still Just a Geek

Play Stargrave!

Friday, August 26, 2022

Leveled NPCs availability week to week

In my weekly Stonehell/Rappan Athuk game, there are a number of leveled NPCs that regularly join in on our adventures... but not always. Given that each of these NPCs is an independent character, and not a paid hireling, I wanted there to be situations where they wouldn't be available, for whatever reason. To keep it simple, I decided a simple morale check would work, with anything 5 or under would mean that NPC wouldn't be available this week.

Thinking about it more, I wanted to add a little something to the check.

Charisma modifiers were a good place to start, especially as my character Nick has a penalty. It just made sense.

But then I thought about other things that would impact whether someone would want to brave the dangerous dungeons with these particular murderhobos. This is what I've come up with.

Make a morale check. A modified 5 or under means the NPC is unavailable to adventure. Under a 2 means it is very unlikely they will ever rejoin the party, and may organize a rival group)
-1 Reduced to 0hp last adventure
-1 Someone died
-1 Unsuccessful delve (no magic items recovered, not enough treasure to cover expenses
+1 Successful adventure (a magic item was recovered, profit was earned, quest complete)
+1 Leveled Up (NPC gained enough XP to level up)
+3 Very successful adventure (NPC got a magic item)
+/- Charisma Mod of group leader (not necessarily the highest level or most charismatic)
+X Bribe (varies by what's offered)

Thursday, August 25, 2022

Juliana The Herbalist

She's cute, bubbly, smart, but critical (of others) to a fault, and can be vicious when things go against her. One of 9 siblings, she spent much of her time away from the family farm, exploring the woods near her village. There she met a hedge witch. Initially the witch wanted nothing to do with the girl, trying to avoid the villager's attention. Juliana was persistent, and eventually the witch began to teach her. First by sending her to collect various herbs, plants, and other things that could be found in the woods. Later she began to teach her magic. Not the fancy flashy magic of the wizards in their towers, but earthy magic.

One day the witch and Juliana were both in foul moods, and getting on each other's nerves. They fought, yelled, screamed, and in the end Juliana stormed from the woods, and told her family about the 'evil witch in the woods who tried to charm her' and then the story spread. The witch was hounded out of her cabin, fleeing in the night before the mob came and burned it down... but not before Juliana had snuck in and taken a few useful trinkets.

Now Juliana lives on her own at the edge of the village making herbal cures and strong flavorful brews. A pair of hedgehogs are her only companions. Whispers in the village are beginning to spread that maybe Juliana didn't resist the witch at all, and she's putting something in her brews... and those hedgehogs? Probably demons.

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Curdom the Unstopable

Curdom the Unstoppable
Maimed as a teenager by a werewolf, this young cleric doesn't let his limp slow his hunt for the best that ravaged the monastery of the silvery moon he grew up in. As a youngster he was more interested in the ritual of the temple rather than the hard work it took to maintain it, but after he was nursed back to health, he threw himself into training to fight the monsters that hunt the world. Never the best in skill or technique, Curdom will pick himself up and keep fighting by sheer force of will.

In addition to the usual fighting equipment, he always carries a couple vials of silver infused holy water that act like acid on lycantropes, and prefers payment in silver.

His one goal in life is to eradicate the scourge of lycanthropy, be it through healing magics or the silvery head of his mace.

Monday, August 1, 2022

June '22 in Review

COVID Sucks! Even more than poison ivy, though it was close. It was a “mild” case that mostly resolved after a little more than a week (faster than the poison ivy) but still miserable. The only positive thing about it was being able to binge watch some TV. Actually that was about the only thing I was able to do, period. I spent most of the time in bed asleep.

Not how I wanted to be spending my PTO. I had PLANS, and now I need to update those plans.

Only got a couple of session of D&D in this month, but Nick and company continue to deal with the frog cultists, and helping them clear out their haunted cloister. Unfortunately it was (is?) haunted by invisible stalkers, one of which chucked my character off the cloister wall.

In spite of yet another month of ill health, I still managed to get a bit done. The one I'm happiest with is the Viceroy Scrutator. I've never been great at white, but I think I pulled it off.

Media - Like I said, lots of time watching TV...
Brooklyn 99 (season 7 and half of 8)
Star Trek Voyager (season 2)
Star Trek Strange New Worlds
Ms. Marvel
The Umbrella Academy Season 3
The Expanse Season 2, 3, and half of 4
The Princess
Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel season 4

I now have an actual table that I can game on. My goal is to pull out some terrain (even unpainted) and play one of the solo scenarios for Stargrave. I also want to finish off the froghemoth. It's nearly done, and I just need to wrap it up.

Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Stonehell: Scouting Mission

Session 187 was played on 1/30.

Borumar, Thief 9 (Josh)
Morgana, Mage 8 (Rob)
Joho, Mystic, 7 (Chris)
Koltic, Cleric 6 (NPC)
Biffin, Fighter 7 (NPC)

Morgana uses some of her earnings from the ethereal dragon to craft a scroll of Summon Slug. Joho hires some meatshields, while Borumar buy’s Mr. Sinister the wardog, and sends Captain Morgan for training. Koltic gets drunk, and makes some healing potions.

On the way to Stonehell, a swarm of noxious black flies swarm the party. Borumar and one of Joho’s meatshields, Thunder the Dwarf, get a slight fever. They pass through the hobgoblin caves, and through the disco room. Joho is injured, as are 3 of the meatshields. One of the meatshields, Barcox, becomes a level 1 fighter.

Further in down on level 3, they stumble on some bugbears. Morgana sleeps some of them, and they begin to talk, but negotiations break down, and before they can do anything with their monstrously long reach, Morgana roasts them all with a fireball.  

Continuing down to level 5, they bump into a squad of Vrilya near the mines, talk their way past them, and continue down toward the Vrilya’s upper area, and trigger the Scroll of Mapping they’d recovered from the dragon’s hoard. Exploring some of the revealed spaces, they stumble on a minotaur camp. Morgana roasts them, dropping 3 out of 5. The remaining two rage into melee but are quickly cut down. They find a hidden lockbox, and haul it out. Deciding they’ve had enough for one trip, they head back to the surface, killing a squad of hobgoblin scouts, and looting their arms and armor.

Back in town, Joho gives Morgana 10,000gp for her research.

Gains: 7900gp in various coinage
Kills: Bugbears, Minotaurs, Hobgoblins

Monday, July 18, 2022

New Monster: Hammerhead Dungeon Flatworms

"This? No, this was about a year after the dragon." The old woman shifted on her stool, adjusting the peg leg that was rubbing her stump the wrong way. "Certainly one of the least glamorous creatures to ever crawl through the Underdark, but also one of the nastiest." She nodded at the incredulous looks. "Yes, worse than the dragon. Hoarfrost was smart, mean, and powerful. He'd terrorized the Kelban Reach for decades. Finding his lair was a feat in and of itself, especially when you consider the albino kobolds that worshiped him! But the thing about them was that you could basically see from their point of view. There was a brain, and a motivation... The worms? They're just vermin. Almost alien they're so far removed from us."

Pausing to drink from the earthenware mug, one of her audience asked "But if they're just worms, what does it matter what they think?"

"Oh, I suppose it doesn't, really. More that it's impersonal. You're face to face with something that doesn't care, that just views you as food. Plus, unlike Hoarfrost, there was lots of them. And if you don't kill them all? Then they'll just come back."

Hammerhead Dungeon Flatworms (under 8' long)

Armor Class: 8
Hit Dice: 1-3* (S to M)
Move: 90' (30')
Attacks: Slam Bite
Damage: 1d4 (+1/HD)
Number Appearing: 3d10
Save As: F2
Morale: 12
Treasure Type: Nil
Intelligence: 0
Alignment: Neutral
XP Value: 13/25/50

Hammerhead Dungeon Flatworms (over 8' long)

Armor Class: 7
Hit Dice: 4-6* (M to L)
Move: 90' (30')
Attacks: Slam Bite
Damage: 1d8 (+1/HD)
Number Appearing: 3d6
Save As: F5
Morale: 12
Treasure Type: Nil
Intelligence: 0
Alignment: Neutral
XP Value: 125/300/500

In combat, the worms will attempt to knock down their opponent (save vs paralysis on any hit that causes more points of damage than the target has hit dice or be knocked down), and then eat them (free attack on any target knocked prone). They are blind, with an incredible sense of smell. The Hammerhead Dungeon Flatworms are resistant to non-magical weapons (1 point of damage per hit), fire, poison, and 1st and 2nd level spells. Unless completely destroyed, the heads of the worms can regenerate a full body at a rate of 1hp/day.

Ranging in size anywhere from 1' to 15' long, and 6"-12" thick, they're usually about 1/10 as wide as they are long. Their distinctive hammerhead appearance is the result of 2 bone-like growths that the worms use to both dig, and also to bludgeon their prey with. Infested areas usually have a strong sweet & sour smell.

Hammerhead Flatworms are said to be the spawn of the Great Worm, though some claim they're actually just worms that ate of the Great Worm, and absorbed some of its power. Whatever the case, these worms are invasive, aggressive, difficult to kill, and nearly impossible to be completely rid of. When they spread to a new area, the best case scenario is containment and regular eradication. A single surviving worm is able to repopulate any underground space. Worse is that they have no natural predators as they taste terrible.

This post has been inspired by this story.

Friday, July 15, 2022

Mudgullet the Froghemoth Part 1

 In honor of my new house, I decided that the first mini I paint here had to be something kinda special. And by special, I mean BIG, since I finally have the space to display my big minis. I don't yet have the display shelf/cabinet to display it, but that's coming... eventually.

In the meantime, let's get to it!

The first thing that needed doing was cleaning up the mold lines. For the most part they weren't too bad, and were only noticeable on the tentacles. As you can see though, this is a pretty big "mini." The base is over 4" and Mudgullet definitely hangs over it on all sides. 

After taking care of the mold lines, it was a quick dry fit to see how it all went together, and see how the gaps looked. Again, not too bad. and again the biggest issue is the tentacles. Nothing a little greenstuff can't take care of. However, before I glue the beast together, I wanted to see where painting would be an issue. Obviously the underside of the body and inside of the legs were the worst. The mouth might be a problem too. 

Time to slap some paint!

I went ahead and skipped priming, and dived in with Olive Shadow, which seems to be out of production. I considered Olive Drab and Troll Skin as alternatives, but Olive Drab was too bright and Troll Skin didn't have the dirty brownish tinge I wanted. Initially I tried Ogre Skin on the underside of the tentacles straight over the white Bones, but it was too bright. I then painted it over the Olive Shadow, and got a base color much closer to what I was looking for. 

For the non-rocky parts of the base, I slathered on Muddy Brown. Unfortunately the base was kinda warped. Nothing for it but to glue it onto a bigger base. A 5" base. Gonna have to come up with some custom stats, as the 5e version is only supposed to be on a 3" base.

 That's a 4" base in the background.

I'm not really sure what a froghemoth's mouth should look like, but this mix of Gothic Crimson and Monster Maw works I think. Also I started working on the teeth and spikes.

But as you can see here, only got so far. They were all base coated with a mix of Walnut and Russet Brown, working it's way in layers toward Dirty Bone.

And then there's the gap filling. Both around the neck and the tentacles.

Tuesday, July 12, 2022

Stonehell: Ethereal Dragon Hunting

Session 186 was played on 1/16.

Karl, Dwarf 8 (Julia)
Morgana, Mage 8 (Reggie
Joho, Mystic, 7 (Chris)
Koltic, Cleric 6 (NPC)
Biffin, Fighter 7 (NPC)
Aroon, Fighter 4 (NPC)
Jameth, Fighter 4 (NPC)
Lor’Koth, Dwarf 5 (NPC)

Karl creates a set of “dragon hunting hats” for the party in anticipation of going after the ethereal dragon. Koltic spends the week making healing potions.

Heading down through the caves into the lost level, Karl gets himself covered in bubbles while Joho holds onto him with a rope, pulling him along like a balloon. On the way to where the dragon is laired, they run across a troll. Joho uses Karl to swing himself into the fight with it. Thankfully the troll is rather dumb, and alone, and in spite of it’s regenerative powers, they manage to hack it apart and burn the body. They find a nice stash of treasure, including some gems and a fancy fur coat (in need of a cleaning).

Approaching the dragon's lair, the party splits up to come at the dragon from 2 directions. Karl comes in through the upper bridge area, while the rest of the party attacks from the stairs. Koltic blesses the party, protection from evil spells are cast, and Morgana drops invisibility on the squishy members of the party. Biffin drinks his potion of heroism, and Karl inserts his Buttplug of Protection.

The dragon hears Karl, and breathes a weird oily rainbow at him, which hurts and pops the bubbles. Biffin, from behind, hits the dragon with oil. Morgana attempts to Dimension Lock the dragon, but the dragon saves, this time turning to breathe on the rest of the party. More attacks are launched at the dragon, most miss, those that hit don’t do full damage due to the dragon's ethereal nature.

Morgana uses her second Dimensional Lock, and this time the dragon fails. It roars in anger and rather than again breathing on the party, it charges in. (they’re lucky it was a young and stupid dragon, and the dice favored them. Had it breathed for the 3rd time, most of them would have dropped, even if they made their saves.) Once in melee, and vulnerable to the party’s weapons, the dragon was quickly slaughtered, the final blow coming from Karl as he ran up the creature’s back and hacked into its spine.

Sadly the dragon’s hoard was all sitting in the ethereal plane. On the positive side, there was a crack between the ethereal plane and the dungeon where the dragon came through and a silvery fog emanated from. Morgana thought she could work something out to get at the treasure. THe dragon’s body was slaughtered for interesting bits.

Poking around the lair, the party disturbed 4 angry shadows, but they’re quickly destroyed.

Returning home, Morgana spends a week developing a potion of ethereal travel based on the dragon’s bits they came back with. Making a speed run back into the dungeon, Borumar gives Joho his elephant, and Joho takes the potion, and retrieves the treasure.

For reference:

Gains: The dragon’s treasure!
Kills: 1 troll, 4 shadows, 1 young ethereal dragon

Sunday, July 10, 2022

New Monster: Barrow Wardens

Rathgar slammed into the heavily armored skeleton. "Allianora! Feris?!?" He yelled as it pushed back against his rush.

"It isn't working" Allianora replied, dropping her holy symbol and gripping her mace. "I can't turn them here."

Nimble slipped past Rathgar and his opponent, jabbing a dagger through the gaps in the armor as he passed, with no effect. The skeleton's armor clad elbow slammed Nimble in the face in return, sending the rogue sprawling, blood gushing from his broken nose.

Streaks of golden light shot out from Feris' outstretched hands, and shattered against the armor of the skeleton. "Frelling great..."

The second skeletal knight shoved it's way into the melee, jabbing it's blade into Rathgar's shoulder. 

Reaper's Barrow Wardens as painted by Evilhalfling

Barrow Wardens

Armor Class: 2
Hit Dice: 6* (M)
Move: 90' (30')
Attacks: By Weapon x2
Damage: 1d8+2/1d8+2
No. Appearing: 2d4 (2d4)
Save As: F6
Morale: 12
Treasure Type: Nil
Intelligence: 0
Alignment: Neutral
XP Value: 500

Barrow Wardens are the lesser knights raised in service to a greater undead power, serving as bodyguards and guardian of important sites or treasures. While they are "lesser knights" they are still powerful undead themselves, and are never found working alone. In addition to the usual undead resistances, they're immune to first level spells. They can be turned as vampires outside of their barrow, but can't be turned within it. The mere sight of them is enough to cause fear (save vs spells to resist). In combat they retain their martial skills they held in life, and are usually found in plate mail with a shield and melee weapon. They attack twice per round, and crit on a 19 or 20.

Monday, July 4, 2022

June '22 in Review

Poison Ivy Sucks! This has unfortunately been the main theme of the second half of the month, and it’s been a busy month too. One of the joys of having a house is having the space to actually have guests over! And over the course of the month we’ve had both friends and family visiting.

Stonehell keeps rolling along. I also got to pull Nick out of mothballs, and explore some of the Rappan Athuk campaign area. Still avoiding the core dungeon… Not on purpose, but seems to keep happening.

In addition to that, I also got a game of Pandemic in. We played a 4 person game, and were *this* close to winning, but lost in the end. We decided to keep playing, and then had a massive outbreak cascade that overtook basically all of Europe.

One of the friends that came over spent a great Saturday evening painting and watching Arcane. I got a bunch done, some of it better than other. And I still need to finish my froghemoth.

Brooklyn 99 (season 7 and half of 8)
Star Trek Voyager (season 2)
Star Trek Strange New Worlds
Star Wars Bad Batch
Ms. Marvel (1st Half)
Doctor Strange 2
Stranger Things

Paint some terrain, and play something on it. If nothing else this month, I want to do that.