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Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Dice, Camera, Action: Tomb of Annihilation - Episode 62

Episode 62: Abandon Ship
We jump into the Tomb of Annihilation adventure this week. It's always interesting to see which parts of an adventure Chris chooses to use.

The Waffle Crew

(Anna) Evelyn - Human Paladin of Lathander
(ProJared) Diath - Human Rogue
(Nathan) Paultin - Human Bard
(Holly) Strix - Tiefling Sorcerer
(Dani Hartel) Captain Xandala - Elf Sorcerer

We left off last time on the air ship. Captain Xandala wants the ring of winter. Artus Cimber has it, and does not want to give it up. The group summoned Shemeshka, who can teleport 8 people to Chult. The problem is that there's more than 8 people on the airship. Also, Klauth, the legendary red dragon, is coming towards the ship right now.

The people on the ship: The heroes, Shemeshka, Xandala, Summerwise, Sir Godfrey, Waffles, Simon, Juniper, Artus Cimber.

The group realizes that if they leave right now, the others might be killed by Klauth.

Diath has yet to commit to the geas spell. Until he does so, Shemeshka won't teleport anyone. Strix gets on her flying broom. Xandala casts fly and invisibility on herself.

Godfrey, the undead knight, says that if he dies he will be reborn in another body, so no big deal. Strix polymorphs Godfrey into an albatross so that he can escape.

Klauth can see invisible, and he chases Xandala. Klauth is wielding two wands. YIKES. Xandala uses mage hand to give him the finger.

Klauth wants to know where his ring is. She tells him it's at Port Nyanzaru. Klauth breathes on Xandala. She rolls a natural 20 on her saving throw... still fails. The DC is 24!

People in the chat were very offended by this. A natural 20 is an auto-success on attack rolls, not saves and skill checks. I understand their reaction - why roll if you can't succeed? I think the DC is very high, higher than the DCs of most of the demon lords in Out of the Abyss!

I actually had the exact reverse happen in 4th edition. A character tried to jump from one airship to another, and rolled a 1 on his skill check. His bonus was so high that he still succeeded. It was very weird and I wasn't sure what to do, so I just let it be. The player and I both felt weird about it.

Anyway, the group teleports to Port Nyanzaru. This is a jungle city where dinosaurs are used as beasts of burden.

Shemeshka is with them. She casts geas on Diath. Diath is now magically compelled to find the spectacles and the spell book, which Chris says is actually X the Mystic's arcane grimoire. That is right out of Tomb of Annihilation. I was wondering if he'd make up another book. Do you think he'll change what is in the book?

Shemeshka leaves.

A citizen of Chult recognizes Strix as a dinosaur racer. The whole group gets excited and wants to race dinosaurs, especially Paultin and Evelyn. Artus Cimber wants to find accommodations.

The citizen/Strix fan hands Strix a trinket - a piece of a mural/mosaic tile. She gives him a half-eaten pastry in return, which grosses him out.

The group decides to stay at Kaya's House of Repose, which is the more fancy place to stay in Port Nyanzaru. People want to buy and eat Waffles the owlbear.

Dani has a great idea.. enter Waffles in the dinosaur race. They should do that!

Paultin has a concert. Evelyn is his brand manager. She wants to set up another show for him. He's on his "Drunk and Dying" tour. Evelyn might have him do a show at the Grand Coliseum or perform private shows for the Merchant Princes (the 7 rulers of Port Nyanzaru). He actually makes 145 gp from this performance.

A strange man approaches the group. He tells them dramatically to seek the guardian at Orolunga. This person is wearing a pendant with the symbol of a lidded eye. Vecna?

The group decides to get the spectacles and the book first, because violating the geas spell will probably kill Diath. Do you think she's used geas spells on Diath's ancestors? Seems likely.

Someone is following them. Avery pale dude with a satchel. The group approaches him. His name is Leric Dashland. He's from House Dashland of Waterdeep, where Evelyn is from. He wants the group to create a map of  some of the mysterious ruins in the jungle - Orolunga and Nangalore. In return he'll give them a ship. Strix is very excited about getting to name the ship.

The group heads to the inn. Time to use the stuff to summon the Sewn Sisters. The ink is meant to be applied to the scroll. Strix makes sure everyone has gone potty before she starts.

The ink slithers out onto the floor and crawls toward the parchment. It leeches into the parchment and purplish writing appears on the scroll until all the ink is gone and has become writing on the scroll. It has become a magic scroll that Strix can cast from.

Strix says, "I'll give it a gander." Evelyn perks up and says, "Did someone say Lathander?" which killed me.

The writing looks like it is in Baba Yaga's handwriting. Wow. OK. o how did Shemeshka get this stuff? Is Baba Yaga keeping tabs on Strix and helping her from afar? Has Shemeshka inserted herself as a go-between? Baba Yaga could show up at any time in her dancing hut.

Maybe she is a rival of the Sewn Sisters, who are powerful hags on their own. As a coven, they're a formidable threat. Perhaps she wants Strix to kill them.

Something hits the window. Evelyn runs to check it out. It's a winged snake. It's gone.

Strix uses the scroll and she's pretty sure that the hags will come to them when they sleep. Everyone is going to sleep in Strix's room.

At one point the group finds Artus downstairs chatting up a half-orc woman who is wearing the symbol of Torm.

At night, everyone but Evelyn feels something climb on top of them. A spectral, ghostly figure of an old crone, thin and spindly. She spits in each of their mouths. Chris makes sure to point out that this is somewhat sexual, and the players are really repulsed. Paultin likes it, though.

The next morning, Artus tells the group that he'd like a priest to come along on the journey. He wants to go to Camp Vengeance, a fort held by the Order of the Gauntlet. Another camp was destroyed by undead. The group will have to pass by it to get to Camp Vengeance.

As the group prepares to shop, Diath notices a winged snake quietly heading off somewhere as Artus leaves the group.

Meanwhile, hundreds of miles away, Xandala falls... burning.. and she sees Klauth fly off to the south, towards Chult. Chris says she's dead. She took 91 points of damage. That's where we stop!


Decent show. I'm glad to see the heroes in Port Nyanzaru. I was hoping to see a waffle dinosaur race, but it looks like that's not in the cards. Chris basically laid out where the group will be going this season, although that could change at any time.

The camp is such a complex place, IMO, I am interested to see what he does with it. When I read it, I felt like I'd have a hard time handling it. It seems like it could be a drag if you're not careful.
The ruined camp, on the other hand, is awesome.

Orolunga and Nangalore are really cool places, I am very much looking forward to the group going to Orolunga in particular.

Sunday Oct 22nd, Twitchcon will have a live DCA show. That's in one month! Should be awesome! Nate can't make it. Dani said she'd be in the crowd, so that means we might get the return of Dee, which would be awesome.

I'd be fine with Dani playing with them at the live show. In fact, I think she should just stay for good. She adds a lot to the game. She's sharp, funny, and she knows her stuff. I'd love to see what kind of character she would make.


Andy Hatton said...

Was the Eye Holy symbol maybe for Savras? Since the Temple of Savras just showed up in Acq Inc? (Though looking at the SCAG, Savras's holy symbol is a crystal ball, with eyes on it but still doesn't quite match.)

I was kinda hoping they would announce that Dani would be playing the Half-Orc Cleric and join the party full time, I really like her. But Dee as the guest again would be great!

Sean said...

Andy: Could be Savras, not sure! I think Dani jut said on twitter that she won't be able to make TwitchCon.. so who knows? Dee? Murdy Gurdy?