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Monday, October 24, 2016

Planescape - The Whispering Library

Tonight's session of Planescape was all about returning to Graz'zt's realm and making a decision. Graz'zt wants to marry the group's demon lord friend and annex her abyssal realm.

The players had to choose:
  1. Graz'zt marries Bazuuma
  2. Bidam (Jessie's character) marries Bazuuma
I had planned for either one. I knew there was a good chance that the heroes would go for the Graz'zt thing because they usually go for nutty stuff like that.

I have been working on a guide to the plane of positive energy and it is really mind-blowing. There isn't a lot of material on it, but what is there is really cool. In a 4e Blackmoor campaign I ran, Bazuuma was infused with positive energy which made her a sort of "good" demon lord. Now that I've read more about positive energy, I can give her some cool powers.

I made stat blocks for her and her demons. They aren't completely done yet. I'm going to post what I have so far at the bottom of this post.
  • Jovocs: This is a conversion of a 3e monster. These demons serve Bazuuma
  • Contempticorns: Foul-mouthed red unicorns lifted from the Slaughtergrid adventure.
  • Bazuuma: I am still working on her eye rays. Right now she has the ten traditional eye rays and then ten others based on 5e spells which need a lot of tweaking.
Most of the material in this session was taken from a 4e dungeon magazine adventure called Court of the Dark Prince.

(Jessie) Bidam - Platinum-Scaled Dragonborn Fighter
(George) Theran - Half-Dabus/Half-Elf Wizard
* NPCs: Fall-from-Grace (level 11 Succubus Paladin)

A marilith
The adventurers had been tricked into using a quasit key to teleport to Graz'zt's court with Bazuuma. Graz'zt immediately hit them with a command spell and said.. "Halt." That meant that on their next turn, they could do nothing. The save DC for this was 23, so all of the heroes failed. Bazuuma was immune.

Graz'zt is way, way too powerful for the heroes to fight. I had considered doing some kind of skirmish between him and the group but that just doesn't seem feasible for these 11th level characters.

Nine mariliths advanced on the heroes and Bazuuma fired off 5 eye rays at them (she has 20 eyes). Then she used her concentrated beam of positive energy, which overheals you until you explode!

Grazzt was impressed. He has this sidekick, another demon lord ho is named Verin. Verin did the talking. He explained:
  • Graz'zt meant them no harm.
  • He wanted to marry Bazuuma and annex her realm.
  • Together they would rule the "Quadruple Realm of Azzagrat."
  • The heroes would be given settlements in Azzagrat to rule.
  • He asked the group to stay for dinner to consider the offer.
They decided to stay and hear them out. They were brought to a guest room where they would wait for two hours while dinner was prepared.

A vrock

Scrying: Theran's robe of eyes can see invisible, so he noticed a scrying sensor in the room. Graz'zt's high priestess, Lavendeth, was spying on them. The group communicated via Bazuuma's telepathy.

Bidam was torn. He didn't want to get married, but he was appalled at the idea of Bazuma marrying Graz'zt. She basically told Bidam that if he wasn't going to marry her, she was going to marry Graz'zt and then try to overthrow him to take the Triple Realm for herself!

The group took a quick jaunt to The Velvet Realm, a tower where Graz'zt's wives and concubines lived. Graz'zt's first wife, Ela Zalag the Abat Dolor told Bazuuma what she was in for. This basically was an excuse for me to run a bitter divorcee smoking and complaining about her ex. While we're doing simpson clips, here's my favorite part of that episode.

Iggwilv: The heroes went back to the guest room, and Iggwilv's scrying sensor appeared. She wanted Theran to go to Graz'zt's library of whispers. There, if you utter a secret, you can learn a secret in return. The problem is that each time you do this, you must make a saving throw or be trapped in the library.

She wanted Theran to go there and find out the truename of the demon lord Codricuhn, and the other semi-demon lords who accompanied him.

The group went to the library, and shared some secrets about Orcus, and the modrons  In return, they learned the truenames of Codricuhn and two of his sidekicks. The heroes had laid the groundwork for Iggwilv to take control of a truly gigantic demon lord.

Malcanthet, Demon Queen of Succubi

The Angel of Love: Fall from Grace wanted to learn something, too. She revealed that when she ended up in Malcanthet's realm, she was tossed into solitary confinement. Fall From Grace is Malcanthet's granddaughter, and she isn't too thrilled with the fact that Fall From Grace is a paladin.

Fall From Grace says she was visited by an Angel of Love - a good creature that is what the succubi were before they turned to corruption. The Angel told Fall From Grace that if she kept on the path of good, she could one day become an Angel of Love and at last be free of her succubi form.

The group couldn't hear what secret she learned about the angel of love... low perception checks.

Vrock Battle: With that done, they were attacked. Basically, an incubus named Ghavish was afraid that Iggwilv had sent the group to kill him. He had betrayed her not too long ago. Ghavish decided to try to kill the heroes first.

The group fought Ghavish and two vrocks and it was quite a battle. The vrocks stunning screech is no joke. Bidam now gets 3 attacks a round with his sword of sharpness and it's pretty epic. Theran has yet to use his staff of power once and it is starting to bug me. The heroes prevailed and Ghavish is no more.

The Decision: So we got to the dinner and Bazuuma and Bidam were still telepathically trying to decide what to do. Their decision: Bazuuma was going to secretly marry Bidam. Then she'd marry Graz'zt and they'd try to take him down from the inside.

Crazy idea! I have no idea how this is going to play out. But what happened was that the group got really excited when they heard Verin's offer.

Theran's Domain: Theran was offered rulership of an earthmote in Azzagrat called Skyshrine, a place where djinns had mysteriously disappeared.

Bidam's Domain: Bidam was offered rulership of Allagash, a former demon breeding ground that was attacked by the army of Orcus and now was home to weird demons. Bidam has a dark pact with Orcus/Tenebrous, and Bidam sensed that the demons there were linked to Orcus and would do his bidding. Tenebrous wanted Bidam to muster them and attack Lamashtu, who (in my campaign) had taken over Orcus's plane of Thanatos.

As soon as Jessie heard that, she got really excited and the deal was made.

The bad guys had two meals prepared, one for a "yes" and one for a "no."
  1. Yes: Giant space hamster steak.
  2. No: A baby pegasus on a spit roast.

Delicious space hamster it was!

Next session, the group will clean up their new dominions in Azzagrat and perhaps we'll do the secret wedding.

I have absolutely no idea how this will play out. I guess it will go like this:
  1. Secret wedding.
  2. Wedding with Graz'zt? Maybe Bazuuma will try to put it off.
  3. Magical connection of Burningwater to Graz'zt's Bay of Choking Bile (wish spell?).
  4. Graz'zt expanding his city, Zelatar. Zelatar currently exists in 3 planes at once. Now it will extend to Burningwater, too.
  5. How the hell could Bazuuma overthrow Graz'zt? Would Iggwilv stand for it? I doubt it. I assume Tenebrous can help, as can Codricuhn if Iggwilv can force him to kneel before her. Bechard, the obyrith, is loyal to the heroes because they freed him way back when, so he's the one who will likely keep them alive.
I hope I can fold this into my upcoming plans of running the Hellbound boxed set. We'll have to see how everything plays out. I'm a little worried that the group is in way over their heads on this one. Graz'zt is insanely powerful.

A great session! We are on a nice little roll. We don't do a lot of combat and I'm making an effort to try to make sure each session has some sort of "set piece" encounter.

Here's what a Jovoc looks like:

I made these stat blocks with the 5e monster maker, which is completely free and quite awesome. Here's the stats:

Here's the foul-mouthed unicorn stats:

Here's the rough draft/unfinished Bazuuma, demon lord of pride and positive energy:


Jason Raabis said...

Do Theran and Bidam develop their gifted palaces/realms much during your sessions? I know the area they own in Sigil has seen some attention. How about their digs on the elemental plane of earth? What do you anticipate they will do with their gifted realms in Graatz's domain? Do they own any bases of operation on the prime material plane?

Sean said...

Jason Raabis: I just kind of ask them what they want it to be like and then I write them up. The mansions in the plane of earth are being built by their tasked genie, so we haven't worked that out yet. I had planned on doing it last week but the group kind of steered thing off-course. Their places in Azzagrat are all messed up. They'll have to clean them up and appoint a lieutenant to watch over them. To start with there won't be any inhabitants, but I guess demons will trickle in. The player might have some specific idea in mind.. I could see george not wanting anyone up on the earthmote, and Jessie might want her breeding ground as a place to muster those orcus-tainted demons who are still lurking there. They don't have any place on the prime material. Theran lived in a cave (!) and Bidam did menial labor for a sorceress. Basically, Bidam baby-sat a little goblin and gave him baths. Bidam was semi-homeless.. he would root through people's garbage for items and food.

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