Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Godfall

Whale fall. It's when a whale carcass falls into the abyssal zone of the ocean, bringing it's now unused, carbon filled meaty chunks to the eldritch horrors that live in the deep down. I saw an article on it the other day and it got me thinkering: What would happen if an n-dimension creature of unfathomable physicality came crashing down into our abyssal third dimension?

Probably the carrion-eaters would swarm it and form a complex localized ecosystem that could be sustainable for decades.

Or, to put it another way, people would form a city around it in an attempt to exploit it for their own financial gain.

It would start with someone wanting to know more about it and looking to hire people to explore it. Then, someone dumb enough would take the job. Assuming they survived, tales and rumors of their discovery would spread, then more would show up. Knowing these folk would need basic necessities at hand, caravans would arrive to feed off the discovery second hand. Then the families arrive. At some point along the line, the generic mass of people organize and a town forms.

They'd probably give it some dumb name too, like...

Godfall

The event occurred one cold, snow covered, winter evening in the Dalr valley of the Fjell mountains. Without warning the quiet valley erupted in madness as the beast crashed it's way into reality, fracturing the laws of physics and causality as it did. It thrashed and rived for days, tearing up the surrounding area, until finally dying.

While the noise was maddening, the deafening silence that followed was perhaps even worse. The noise, caused by reality attempting to reject the presence of the Beast, resounded with the pure essence of rebellion and chaos. The silence, however, echoed with submission; a reality broken and beaten with no fight left to ward off the intrusive presence.

To the untrained eye (that is one not forced to look upon the Beast day in and day out) the Beast is hard sight to behold, its very presence an offence to any sense held by a creature of this reality. A pallid skinned creature, appearing as a slain cross between a blobfish, harvestman, and an axoloti suffering from sever genetic drift, it lays partly upon the surface, and partly fused with the rocks of the mountain range itself.

If one were to find a map of the area from three hundred years ago, they would probably note a vast dwarven kingdom that inhabited the mountain region, though somehow forgotten to modern memory. Maps drafted three hundred years in future, however, show an ancient dwarven kingdom, absent of any notation regarding Godfall.

The Surrounding Area

Just getting to Godfall is a pain in the ass, as a metaphysical crater was left from the impact. Some of the hazards include:

Midnight Woods - A region of forest populated by blacken gnarled trees that exist in a constant midnight. This ain't a metaphor - no matter the time of day outside, within the match it is constantly night, though the night sky visible through the trees offers no known constellations. The woods actively offer resistance to any who enter, the trees themselves striking out.

The Standing Men - A field of standing figures, dressed in attire from various cultures throughout the ages. Though scattered throughout the field, any who enter the field freeze permanently. There's at least one figure frozen midair with a terrified look on his face. A few have crossbow bolts pointed towards their head. While no one has figured this out, the figures are locked in a temporal field. For them time passes normally, while outside they move at one hundred thousandths of normal speed. A safe path through does exist, for those clever enough to find it.

Crystalline Pass - A passage between the mountains where every exposed rock and plant has been transmuted into crystals, with mirror like surfaces. Upon closer investigation, however, the crystals do not reflect the observer, but a possible version of the observer. Whether these alternatives are from an alternate reality or timeline is uncertain. Take care when passing through this region, however, as it has been rumored that one can become confused in the perfect reflects and, sometimes, the reflections will walk out, leaving the original trapped.

The Valley of Glass - Some places it rains water. Here it rains glass. Don't get caught in the rain.

The Outer City

The Outer City is similar to any city with a colossal carcass of an extra-dimensional being rotting in the center of it. General stores, blacksmith, tannery, game halls, whore houses, iron-barred-window asylums, flesh mines, sinister looking wizard tower that echos strange noises in the dead of night. You know, the usual.

Yare's Yaren - A tanner who cures their leather in the strange liquids that seep forth from the rotting creature. Items made from this process typically carry unique properties, depending on the solution it was cured in.

The Flesh Mines - Exactly what they sound like. Though only marginally less dangerous than the mines of the Inner City, the exterior Maggot Halls employ more of the populous through the simple fact that workers get to see the sun at least once a day. While some of their product is sold as food within the town, the majority of their harvest is sold directly to the Wizard Tower.

Wizard Tower - More of a collection of towers and joining wall around a central pit, than a traditional single tower, it was the very first building built in the town. Strange glowing can be seen in the windows at night and horrifying sounds echo from within. None of its members show themselves in public, and rarely speak of their intentions. Rumors abound of flesh gollems that serve the wizards and of the vats they're grown in. These rumors are true. They are entirely true. What the rumors don't speak of are the homeless and lower class peasants that are pulled off the street and thrown into said vats to serve as stock to bound with the added beast flesh.

The Inner City

This part of the city is built within the creature itself, specifically the part that is assumed (and hoped) to be it's mouth orifice. First thing new arrivals notice is that the creature appears to be larger on the inside than the outside. Next, which they may learn the hard way, is that spatial based reasoning and perception doesn't work exactly the same as it does in the outside world. Alleys that one can walk hundreds of times can suddenly lead to a different location, or deep into the Belly, with no warning. Even just entering the Inner City carries a chance of becoming lost. At some point some genius installed a rope for people to follow from the Outer to the Inner, after paying the toll of course, but every so often (say 1 in 20) not even that will lead to where it is suppose to.

Here you'll find the mining offices, the distilling factories, and various other processing plants, along with the worker barracks and company store. Raw materials from the Belly are brought here for processing before being shipped out to the Outer City.

The Belly of the Beast

Some of the more sought after materials are drawn from here. Trouble is, the deeper in you go, the more standard rules of reality stop applying. Fleshy tunnels give away to stone hallways, whose walls still carve as meat. Euclidean space dissolves away into non-Euclidean expanses. Time rethinks the whole "linear" thing, and explores other options. Wizards mutter something about metaphors being made reality, but no one really pays them mind. Not as long as their gold is good, at least.

Here's a peek at some of the creatures (antibodies?) lurking within:

The Flat Ones - "Humanoid" looking creatures that lack a third dimension and, as such, are often mistaken for paintings and graffiti within the strange hallways, though they appear invisible when "seen" from their missing dimension. Anyone killed by these things does not die, but rather they have one of their three dimensions sapped from them, joining their ranks and becoming trapped in a never dying, never living two dimensional hell.

The Lost Boys - Any semi-industrial town is bound to generate at least a few orphans. It's just a natural occurrence. So, what do you do with them all? Stick them in a group home and hope some soft-hearted person will take them away? No, obviously not.  You employ them with a promise of hot meals, tie a rope around them, give them a sack and send them into the Belly in hopes their tiny hands grab something of value. Sometimes, though, they don't come back.

Cephalocells - Imagine an octopus. Now, remove everything that makes it an octopus. Then add a beak full of barbs, and the ability to freely move in all three dimensions. Also, an eye on the end of each tentacle that is capable of unleashing a variety of awful magical effects upon reality.  Often found around neon green sacks of neutrophil, from which they're being expelled.

People of Godfall

Beyond the usual collection of townsfolk (merchants, craftsmen, prostitutes, etc) there are a few assorted people unique to Godfall:

Humor Cults
Though it would serve as solid proof their god exists, no legitimate cleric will claim it, as it also proves their god is dead. Several have jumped at the chance to claim it as an enemy of their god, to flaunt the corpse of a vanquished foe and the victory of the mighty god they follow. There are those, however, that do take the creature as divine, and see the rotting carcass as a chance at, or at least a vision into, something beyond. Going along a vague train of thought related to "you are what you eat", cults have sprung up around consumption of the humors - or what is thought to be the beast's humors - in order to harvest some of the dwendling divinity. You can usually identify these people by their mutated visage and the occasional painful seizures that take them as four dimensional shapes boil over them.

Flesh Shamans
No decent religion is without a counter part for which they can claim is sinful and damnable. This is where the Flesh Shamans come in for the Humor Cults. Where the Cults consume the humors, the Flesh Shamans consume, believe it or not, the Flesh of the creature, seeking the divinity that they insist is in the meat of the creature. They're notable by their rolling mounds of mutated flesh that doesn't seem to hinder their dexterity.

The Wizards
Madmen who hide their insanity through the thinly veiled excuse of arcane eccentricities, they seek to learn all they can, and more, of the beast at the center of the city. Some seek to reanimate the flesh, some seek to call others like it from beyond reality. The wizards are easily identifiable as none leave the tower without donning animal masks and heavy, form hiding robes.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Additional Bug Catcher bugs

Currently running what was suppose to be a one shot in the GLOG system. The dinner part continues ever on, however, and the one shot has turned into a two-parter. One of the players is running Bug Catcher and, due to the situations they find themselves, will need to restock their bugs soon, though the example ecosystems don't match where they find themselves. So, more of 'em:

>>Bugs are insects, spiders, snails, slugs, and limbless worms of all types.
I'm also counting crabs in this, because why not?

EDIT: Apparently, there was a desert ecosystem already written.  As such, I've renamed the ecosystem. Also, after some goodly peer review, I've made a few changes. 

Ecosystem: Red Desert Waste in That One Spot, On That One Guy's Island
  1. Camel Grub - A bloated grub about the size of a small shoe. Surprisingly full of water - really just more than it should have. 1d4 pints worth, in fact. Enough to extinguish a touch, or fill a water skin. The water is clean and refreshing, with no ill effects gained from drinking straight from the bug.
  2. Knock-Knock Butcher Boy - A green and bronze schemed pill bug, that smells slightly of ethanol. When placed into the keyhole of a lock, it'll immediately get to work trying to pick it. Should it successfully pick the lock, it will crawl proudly back into its container, and is usable an additional time that day. Should it fail to pick the lock, it will explode in anger, doing enough damn to destroy the lock, allowing what it was protecting to be accessed. Bug begins with 1d4 skill points in Lockpick, and loses one for each successful attempt. 
  3. Cactus Dancer - Lithe, needle legged spider that has learned the secrets of acupuncture from the cactus spines it dances across. Save vs Stun for 1d4 rounds. 
  4. Corpse Crier Worm - A thin, pale worm that, when placed into the ear of a corpse, will burrow in, stimulating not yet rotten neurons. Allows for 1d6 minutes of Speak With Dead before the brain bits become too eaten to continue. 
  5. D'nith Dust Devil - A trembling little thing with the ability to burst when frightened as a, presumably, evolutionary defense mechanism. Creates a 20' cloud of sand, thick enough to hinder vision to anyone inside, or trying to see through, the cloud. Anyone caught within the area suddenly finds themselves trying to breath sand. Save vs Suffocation, or spend a round chocking and coughing. Easiest way to frighten the thing is to throw it. 
  6. Missile Hornet - A blue and black schemed hornet, with an ethereal glow. By shaking the capture phial vigorously, then uncorking and pointing towards a target, the hornet will strike out in pure hornet anger. It attacks over multiple rounds for 1d8, 1d6, 1d4 and finally 1 point of damage. The target may circumvent these attacks by spending a round to crush the thing, doing 1 point of damage to itself in the process. 
  7. Scorpion - Just a normal scorpion. You ever have one of these thrown at you? Good Lord. Target makes a save vs Fumble, or lose everything they're currently holding as they freak out. 
  8. Skillapede - A foot long centipede looking monstrosity​, with legs nearly the same length as its central body. When applied along the user's spine, the skillapede burrows its various appendages into the flesh. Its legs wrap around the nervous system, the fangs pierce the base of the skull. Why use this horrific thing? Because somewhere along the way someone, somehow, figured out the bug Bestows increased skill ability. Add 1d4 of a following skill, rolled when finding the bug (1. Carpentry, 2. Advanced Mathematics, 3. Metal Working, 4. Herbalism, 5. Alchemy, 6. Theoretical Biology) 
  9. Apocalocus - A black and red locus with far too many barbs. When placed or thrown on an object of relative organic status, it will devour that item entirely, before collapsing into a food coma. Wooden door, worn leather jerkin, coal golem. Living creatures have enough sense to move away it as it starts biting, so it lacks in attack application (save for eating away the armor). 
  10. Grim Maggot - Actually an inch long caterpillar, bearing a skull pattern on its head and a Vantablack body. Upon being released from the jar, the Maggot will crawl exactly 10' before standing on its hind most legs an beginning a sobering dirge loud enough for anyone in the room to hear (50' if outside). The song functions as the Doom Song spell for 1d4 rounds. At the end of these rounds, the caterpillar's skin splits open, releasing a Grim Fly (1 HD) into the world. It is under no one's control, nor is the subsequent Reverent. 

Ecosystem: Beach
  1. Beach Comber - A tiny, palm sized crab with a knack for finding small, shiny objects. When released, it will scuttle off and return 2d6 rounds later, dragging a one-handed size object behind it. Once delivered, it will wander off, full of a sense of accomplishment from a job well done.
  2. Black Tea Slug - When squeezed and wrung out, this tar black slug produces enough Grease to cover a 10x10 area.
  3. Black  Musta Lentaa - Target must Save or not act that round as the fly's painful bites distract them. 
  4. Bunker Barnacle - Popping this barnacle in your mouth grants you immunity to weapons for 1d4 rounds, as your skin calcifies. It also, however, glues you in place, disallowing you to move or take any action other than muffled speech. 
  5. Eldritch Worm - Seems more tentacle than worm. By sliding this into your ear, and allowing it to crawl in completely, the Bug Catcher gains Wizard Vision for 24 hours. Strangely, it never comes back out. 
  6. St. Tollan's Hermit - Through sucking this poor, malformed crab from its shell and swallowing whole, the Bug catcher can merge with the next stone surface they touch. The stone must be larger than the User. While the Catcher can hear through the stone, they can not see, move or eat. They may stay merged for as long as they like, however any damage done to the stone, magic or otherwise, expels the Catcher, leaving them stunned for 1d6 rounds. 
  7. Fulgens Gemma Beetle - By squeezing this glittering beetle into your mouth, and swallowing the innards, the Bug catcher will vomit forth a Prismatic Ray in 1d4 rounds, for (level)d6 damage. 
  8. Naty Maton Fly - By uncorking the bottle this tiny, proboscis wielding fly is kept in and screaming "GO! NOW! GET 'EM! GET 'EM! BRING ME THEIR BLOOD SO THAT I MAY FEAST!"* said fly (0HD, 1HP, Def 6) is encouraged to launch out, making touch attacks on targets. Upon successful attack, the fly drains 1d4 HP and looses 2 defense, as it becomes slowed by the sweet red nectar. Upon screaming the command "TO ME! RETURN!"* and gesturing at your open mouth, the fly zips back, allowing you to swallow it, thus healing yourself for the same amount of damage done. (*The screaming is vital to the process. If the player refuses to scream, well, the fly wanders off doesn't it?)
  9. Wave Crasher Flea - When ingested, save or gain 2d4 points of Drunkenness. It is said the original waves were started from drunken whales vomiting. 
  10. Siren Slug - The Bug Catcher whispers to the slug, before releasing it. It then begins to make a high pitched "song." Anyone who can hear the Slug's song, must make a save or gain a Conviction (told to the slug in the initial whispers).


Friday, April 14, 2017

Paladins


Lately I've taken to woodworking. I'm still getting the hang of it, learning the ropes and all that, but I'm enjoying it. It's a relaxing change to the typical "herp derp, neural network *type type type*" of my day. It lets my mind settle, run clean. Nearly zen like. And lately, as I've done this inner searching, I've realized one thing:

Fuck Paladins.




Seriously. Bunch of jerks named after a hill.

Everyone I've seen played has been merely a fighter that happened to get spells because they carried a holy symbol. Most showed more concern for their horses than, say, a beggar in need.

This can be fixed.

The main change I'm throwing around is that the paladin's spells aren't guaranteed. None of this "spells per day because I'm holding this holy symbol" nonsense. As a paladin, you are not the extension of your god's Will; that's the cleric's purpose. As a paladin, you are a Champion of the god. You must be seen carrying out their work, and proving your worth. You wanna wield divine power? Go feed the poor. Defend a peasant farm from bandits. Sacrifice yourself so your friends can escape. Gain the heart of the people and you'll gain the favor of your god.

In performing such tasks you'll earn Good Boy Points Points of Divine Favor. While an hour of prayer will give you access to all your spells for the day, you must have enough Divine Favor to cast them. Essentially, the "casting cost" of the spell is equal to the "level" of the spell. Looking to cast Bless? As a first level spell, that's one point cost. Commune? Five points. Part Water? Too bad, that's not really your thing, but you get the idea. A non-exhausted list of actions and their point rewards are below. As is your spell list.

Now, as said, gaining these spells requires an hour of prayer, usually taken in the morning. Casting them, however, is a quick action, in which the favor of your god is called upon, either through prayer or dedication. Casting in this way is fairly subtle and, save for some of the higher level spells, can be mistaken for skill or luck. Going for a Michael Carpenter vibe here, I won't lie.

Rewards and Associated Actions
1 point
  • Praying at Shrine
  • Donating items of minor value
2 point
  • Upholding a tenant of your god
  • Completing a Church Quest
  • Donating items of value
3 point
  • Defending a Holy Site important to your pantheon
  • Returning a Major Artifact to the church
  • Defending those weaker or in need
4 point
  • Completing a Holy Quest 
  • Sacrificing yourself for another in a significant manner
Again, not exhaustive, and should be tailored to suit the god in question. I image a Snake god and a Fire god have very different definitions of "good things."

Points do carry over from day-to-day, however any unused points diminish by two every week. The intent is you continue doing good deeds. There are ways to lose points, mind you. Ask your GM, or stab a beggar, to find out.

Fighting bits are left mostly the same. Proficiency in armor and weapons, skills (where appropriate), and others track mostly the same. To Hit bonus has been halved, to account for spell casting without an attribute attachment.

You'll notice the only healing spell/prayer in the spell list is Sacrifice. This is intentional.

The Brass Tacks 

HP: As Fighter
To Hit bonus: +1 every other level (half of Fighter)
Saves: As Cleric
Max Divine Favor pool: Character Level


Level
Hit Points
To Hit
Paralyze
Poison
Breath
Device
Magic
1
1d8
+1
14
11
16
12
15
2
+1d8

14
11
16
12
15
3
+1d8
+2
14
11
16
12
15
4
+1d8

14
11
16
12
15
5
+1d8
+3
12
9
14
10
12
6
+1d8

12
9
14
10
12
7
+1d8
+4
12
9
14
10
12
8
+1d8

12
9
14
10
12
9
+1d8
+5
10
7
12
8
12
10
+3

10
7
12
8
12

Spell List

Level 0
Detect Evil

Level 1
Bless (unable to target self)
Detect Magic
Protection from Evil
Remove Fear

Level 2
Delay Poison
Detect Invisible
Heroism
Resist Cold
Resist Fire

Level 3
Dispel Magic
Detect Illusion
Sacrifice

Level 4
Detect Life
Protection from Evil 10'
Turn Undead (at Level-4)

Level 5
Commune
Dispel Evil
True Seeing

Level 6
Anti-Magic Shell
Find the Path
Forbiddance
Tongues

Level 7
Holy Word
Spell Turning


Closing Thoughts
Balanced? Probably not. Divine favor pool could use some tweaking. I can see Bless getting out of hand as currently written. Level 4 could use some beefing out. I've become genuinely curious as to how this plays.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

BEES!

Someone has mentioned to me "its more important to just *put out content*, then worry about half-written blog posts." That seems unwholesome and unsatisfying to me, but, also, I haven't posted in an month or more. So, because of that, you folk get to deal with copy/paste from a document I've labelled simply "Bees." See if you can guess why.

Why bees? I like bees. They give me a substance I turn into booze.

Creatures

Bee Golem

Not actually a golem, per se, but it sounds cooler than "humanoid bee swarm." Well, now that I've repeated it several times, maybe not. Either way, when the hive is threatened the bees (save for the Queen and her retinue, as well as the workers not present) swarm out, taking the vague shape of a large humanoid filling a 10'x10' space with appropriate reach. While it appears fairly solid, due to the massive number of bees involved, any attack against it using traditional weaponry (swords, arrows) pass right through it.

Number wise, we're talking about 10,000 bees per "golem", meaning a healthy hive can host 2 to 6 of these things. Though, if during the day, most of the workers will be out working, so just one forming is reasonable. And probably better for players.

While it is immune to normal weapons, area effects auto hit and do 5,000 damage as that number of bees decide the current course of action might night be the best.  Significant smoke effects will disperse the golem within 1d4+2 rounds, as the alarm pheromones become masked causing the bees to think everything is safe.

The bee golem can attack in several fashions, none of them pleasant. First, a range attack where a group of bees are launched at a target, swarming and attacking as breath weapon. Second, a slam attack where the fists of the humanoid cloud smashes into the target, however, this attack also does the same amount of damage to the golem, as the bees squish themselves and fall away. Finally, and most horribly, the bees have an 'engulf' attack, where the swarm gets automatic hits against whom ever shares the squares with them. All attacks are for 1d6.

The bee golem fears no critical hit, nor can it perform one. However, there is a 1 in 100 chance that a character is allergic to bees and will suffer a poison condition when stung. Alright, yes, it is technically 6 million to 1, but that's even more useless.

Bee Hounds

Dogs with bees in their mouth. When they bark they shoot bees at you.

Stats: As Dog, but with 1d6 Mouth Bee attack

Items

Bee Helmet

It is a helmet. Full of bees. Provides normal armor bonus and also protects against all Mind altering effects. This is due to the bees constantly stinging you, distracting you from the effects. Anything that needs concentration to sustain also automatically fails.

Charm Person? Not on this guy!

Bee in a vial
Ever wonder what happens when a colony feeds on spilled health potion instead of a sugar source? Ofcourse not. Either way, short answer: Healing bees. Keep one in a vial, shake the vial to anger it, apply to skin. When it stings you, treat as the smallest healing spell you got. Why this? I don't know. Why anything?

Slumgum Candle
A black candle made from the residue of beeswax rendering leftovers. When lit, it burns readily and makes an excellent fire starter. Treat as a standard candle, but one quality grade higher than normal.

Dream Mead
Originally fermented by an adventuring guild looking to make coin the city wouldn't tax (long story), Dream Mead uses the honey harvested from dire bees. While the honey is known to send the eater into a dream filled sleep, the mead sends the drinker into an alcohol fueled vision. The player may ask question composed of a number of words based on the number of drinks consumed; at a rate of two words per drink (8 drinks per bottle; drunk rules are doubled if used, -4 to stats until sober otherwise). Answers then play out before the drinker in response. Multiple drinkers do not get to share word count, but do see the same vision.

Beefolk Armor
If'n you've encountered the Beefolk of the Forgotten Lands ("How is it forgotten? It's on the map!" Shut. Up.) then your Murder Hobos have probably killed one and had the idea to hollow one out and wear their carapace as armor. Luckily, given the size, they can. The exoskeleton provides a Chain mail's rating of armor, and the wearer detects as "bee" or "insect", whichever is more usable. Also, "female" if they killed a worker, "male" if they killed a drone. The Queen, in her Majesty, is not suitable for armor making.


Spells

Summon Bee Golem
Cast via whispering promises of sugar into a lit Slumgum Candle, followed by a complicated dance involving plenty of butt wiggling and blowing out the candle. If outside, the golem arrives within 1d4 rounds. If inside, 1d6 minutes as they attempt to find a route inside. Using the slumgum candle in this manner reduces the quality rank by one.

Bee Eye
This spell requires two bees, who's eggs were laid in the same single hive cell and managed to reach adulthood (not even a remotely natural happening). These malformed bees must be taken from the hive and placed into a jar at the same time. The spell itself is cast via shaking the jar vigorously and shouting the incant, then opening the jar and shoving the opening to your eye. As the first bee inevitably stings the caster, it shrivels to a husk and collapses, leaving the stinger in the caster's eye. The other bee swells with life and vigor it should have had. The caster, in the eye he was stung, is now able to see through the surviving bee and direct its movements. The spell lasts as long as the stinger remains in the caster's eye.

Monday, March 6, 2017

The Bone Field

Arthur Fieldsman was a good man.

True to his family name he tended the fields, just as his father, and his father, had. His harvests were bountiful and his livestock, more often than not, were hearty.

He had a good wife. Their marriage had been arranged, sure, but he loved her well enough, and didn't strike her often out of turn. She bore him three healthy and strong children. Each looked like him, but with their mother's dark hair.

He had good friends. Every public house welcomed him with cheers. Those who passed him always offered a smile in greetings. Should he be in need, help was not far away. Some disputes were had, but such is way of neighbors, and no ill will remained a fortnight. Save for the Constable, who never seemed to care for him.

He was a pious man. Like all those that worship the god of Agriculture, he kept a field dedicated - always planted and never harvested. He even rotated the location of the Dedicated field, giving it the best soil he had. Every morning, as the sun rose, he would read the scriptures and recite the Words. Truth be told, though, his reading wasn't the best, so he look upon the illuminations of the codex and remembered what he had been taught.

Arthur Fieldsman was an unfortunate man.

A strange predator came upon the town; a creature glimpsed only in moonlight and shadow. A creature appearing as though a bear, but with a bird's beak rather than a muzzle. It took small animals at first. Chickens, ducks, rabbits, pets. Tearing at the cages and pens with a surgical precision, it started at Arthur's homestead, returning night after night, seeking its next meal. When Arthur's small animals had been exhausted, it moved to the next farm, then the next. When the village ran out of minor livestock, it took bigger. Again it started at Arthur's, then moved on, carving a strange pattern through town.

Then, it came for the children and women folk. Seemingly embolden by its unstopped trail of destruction and carnage, it took to claiming the lest able to protect themselves, and usually without so much as a scream. One night the children would be tucked away, the next morning they would be simply missing, usually with nothing more than a broken lantern or stray torch to suggest foul play.

While it didn't follow the usual pattern around the village, it did begin at the usual place: Arthur's farm. The first night it grabbed the youngest child (rumored to be a mistake), the next the oldest (whom with Arthur often argued), and on the third the middle child (whom Arthur truly favored). From there it randomly began to take from the town. The smith's child, then the butcher's. The general store owner's was next. When the children became too hard to take, due to increased watching over or increased rarity, it turned on the wifmen. Again, starting at Arthur's.

At this point, keen observers were likely to point out that the Constable and his family had largely been spared these hardships. An outsider, assigned to the town by the King years ago, the Constable had disliked Arthur from day one. Some rumored it was an ancient family blood feud, others claimed the Constable had Known Arthur's wife before she was married to him. Still others spoke of strange technicalities in land holding that made the Constable a tenant of Arthur's family, and therefore ineligible to vote in the council which he served.

However, those rumors were put to an end when a distraught Arthur staggered into a tavern, wild eyed and covered in blood. He described a scene of gore and bloodshed, in which him and a man whose home he was helping keep watch were attacked by the beast. Moments later, however, the new widow, who had been hiding within the house, arrived and revealed having seen the whole scene. Only her version involved Arthur attacking and slaying the man, before dragging him off towards Arthur's farm.

Seeing himself surrounded, Arthur quickly drew his dagger and opened his own throat.

Arthur Fieldsman was fucking insane.

Before any of this began, in his annual tillage of his fields, he unearthed a collection of bones. Most appeared to be deer, though more than a few he couldn't identify. Thinking little of it, as the land was ancient, he continued his farming. Come night fall, though, the voices began. Indistinct at first, mere whispers on the wind, the coming days proved stressful for Arthur. Who was speaking to him? Why did no one else hear them?

Hiding his mental break down under the veil of a moonless night, the voices drew him into the cornfields, growing louder with every step. Deeper it called him, and deeper still. By the time reached the bones, the din was deafening. Crying out to his gods for mercy, he collapsed to his knees and took up the bones. For the first time, they spoke clearly.

"We are lonely. We thirst."

Confused by this, Arthur offered water and to stay, to speak with them. But the Dead do not seek mortal company, nor crave living libations; they sought death and blood. Fetching a chicken at once, he drained the body over the bones, and left the body among them. This, for a time, sated the Bonefield, and it fell silent. Though not for long. More and more the Field cried out, more and more he gave it. He soon moved his Dedicated Field to hide his crimes, and dawned a costume used in winter traditional celebrations to hide his shame. And thus his murder spree began.

Arthur Fieldsman was fucking insane.

Or was he?

The Bone Field


Centuries ago, before the town was founded, a battle took place here between forgotten armies. Forgotten and berried in time, the dead become restless and, when finally uncovered, lashed out, making demands cryptic and hungry. They'll more than likely continue their havoc until sated. They literally have nothing else to do.

So what do the dead want? Hell if I know, let's check:

  1. Blood, at least a person's worth.
  2. No, no. More than that. MORE BLOOD.
  3. A memorial stone raised to mark the location of the battle.
  4. For vengeance to be taken out upon the enemy army.
  5. To be returned to their homeland for proper burial. But, who's bones are who's?
  6. News on the war and/or the outcome.
  7. More company! More blood! More bones!
  8. A hogshead of eels dumped on the sight (They're dead, not sane.)
  9. An oath of servitude
  10. Seriously, is this all the blood you have on you? Go get more. 
So why do your Murder Hobos care about this? Some thoughts for usage:
  • The PCs find the town completely empty, save for a crazed Arthur. He'll relay to them how the town was attacked by a strange creature crossed between a bear and an owl that comes at night, and how it has taken everyone in town. He'll plead for the heroes to stay and protect him, as the last survivor. He'll then try to get them alone. For murdering purposes. 
  • The town is currently in full terror at the mysterious killings and disappearances. The people will ask the PCs to help and someone, probably Arthur, will direct them to a cave in the hills, several miles from town. Ain't nothing in the cave, save for a hermit with several bear cloaks. He claims ignorance of the situation and should probably seem suspicious from his social ineptitude. 
  • The events above have carried out as told. The town is scared, confused and suspicious. On top of this, the Dead have begun sending Undead into the town to investigate the loss of their servant. Like, a lot of them. They do the usual undead things. 
Hellrunas will at once recognize this place as a location of power, and fully able to make additional pacts here. Arthur, in fact, nearly joined their ranks, but his mind strayed and became lost. 

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Cagot



To be blunt: You're hated.

Your only crime, however, is that your family name became included in a rhyming song meant to remind the people that you and yours are meant to be shunned. How'd your family name get on the list? Who knows, it was centuries ago. Since then, though, your kind as been outed from the community: forced to live in separate towns; unable to walk barefoot along roads; not even allowed to take religious services with the general public. Any attempt to do so, on your part, will be quick removal of the offending body part.

Almost as if you're some sort of curse bearing monster.

Oh, right.

the Cagot

So, your only OTHER crime is being the embodiment of what these people fear. It is highly likely that someone in your ancestry had these abilities, and got your family added to the list. Not all Cagots have these abilities, but all that have them are Cagots.

Any Wizard Sight or magical sensing used against you shows you as a creature of corruption. Even if you're a philanthropist, who's given your vast treasure to orphans. Though, no one is likely to take any money from your filthy hands. Animals Hate you and will instinctively avoid you.

Special requirement: Charisma must be 9 or below.

Starting equipment: Half normal starting currency; Duck's leg necklace

XP progression, HP, and Saves as Specialist

Bushcraft Skill as per Halfling.

Curse! At first level, and every level there after, you're able to "cultivate" a curse within you. This curse functions as per the Bestow Curse spell, and is deliverable through touch. A specific curse is determined when you begin to cultivate it. Each curse may be cast once per day, but a specific curse may only have one on going version. If cast again on a new target tomorrow, it becomes dispelled from the original target of today. Should the curse be Removed before you dispel it, you can not use it again for a week.


Closing Thoughts
I've no clue as to how this class plays, or why the hell someone would want to play it. I've simply read an article on these unfortunate group of people, who were shunned after someone said "You've got cooties!" and no one else got the joke, then had a hankering to write a class during lunch. Seems like a one trick glass pony to me, but if you're smart with the curses, seems it could be powerful.  Other abilities considered where using your blood on weapons to inflict your curses at range, and one where, in a very messy operation, you pass your cagotry on to someone else, loosing your levels, but being free of the curses. It amused me, but seemed off.

Varient: Diseases rather than curses. Same great shunning, new great taste.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

I made a thing

A buddy of mine is really into that Skyrim game. So, for his birthday (half, a full, two month passed), I thought to make him a wall hanging of Whiterun's Shield. I debated on an actual, usable shield, but wall art seems more suitable in this day and age. Also, larping has passed us both.

Music used: Krauka - stiklur

The steps:

1. Buy the board. I used this thing from Lowes. I ain't got no time for cutting things right now.

2. Apply stain. Used a pre-stain and dark walnut for this. This was my first time using stain and, I won't lie, it got out of hand. Stain is not paint. A pile of oil soaked rags later, though, I managed to rein it in.

Looks good. 
3. Add the field. For this I used some gold paint that just sort of came with the house when we bought it. Nothing in the house itself uses this paint, so I can only suspect sinister purposes. I probably should have used some sort of template or guide to get a perfect circle, but I did it by hand instead.

Like a maverick.


4. Next came the stencil making. Took me forever to find a decent picture and jam it into a photoworking program. Switch it all to black and white, crop the sides, and add some bridging sections. You'll figure it out. Or just use this:


Print it to 11x17 paper and you're good to go. Just got to cut it out.

It was about this time I started to rethink the friendship.

5. Now, after suffering through that, I took it to the piece and aligned it so the boards are running vertical, and the stencil sat relatively centered in the field. I, personally, would have preferred the boards running horizontal, but the source material has them vertical. This seems less efficient against an ax. Though, as this ain't meant for actual defense, I didn't worry about it too much.

After getting it centered, just taped it down and painted. Used a sponge brush to sop the acrylic paint down rather quick.





Not too horrible! Just gotta fill in the bridge areas. The slightest mistake here will destroy the whole thing! No pressure!
Naw, it worked out.


I'm actually surprised at how well it turned out. Now I just gotta get it to the big dummy. Or, maybe I just keep it.