Thursday 8 June 2023

Trollopulous Adjusted Session 21 (Machodor #8); A Trouble with Trolls

     

"Oy! Any o' you lot smell 'orses?"



Introduction


This is the 4th session with the party in the "dungeon" of the crashed Hawkman Sky City, once again trying to find the lost treasure of Ron Ragnar. That's half of the sessions in the Machodor part of the campaign so far; I guess it has become a bit of a mega dungeon itself. But, sometimes, just because you want to go back to the dungeon, doesn't mean you actually can before half the session is over.

Timekeeping


This session took place on 02/June/2023,  and the PCs adventured for 2 days.

Player Characters Present


Giuseppe (Level 4 Paladin from Rome, Brovenloft, E)
Sever (Level 4 Pegasus Corps Ranger of Machodor, E)
Sheamus (Level 3 Irish Fighter from Dublin, Brovenloft, E)
Bumblebore  (Level 1 Magic User, E)


Downtime Summary

The players were mostly keeping a low profile in the Hawkman tower of Luro, leader of the Anti Kenku faction, on level 3 of the Sky City. 


Session Report


Needing reinforcements from the outside world, 3 PCs managed to get back out of the Sky City safely. However, at the bottom of the volcano where they had left their horses (including Giuseppe's Holy Warhorse, and Sever's Pegasus), they heard growls approaching from deeper into the tunnel. Even though the place had proven to be generally safe, it seemed that, finally, monsters had been attracted by the smell of horses.

It was 12 Trolls! Fortunately the party had 1 segment of surprise to evade them, and this they did. I only let them get away with that because they had specifically not hobbled the normal horses, but left them in the care of Bonecrusher and Convess.

Castle Irish was only an hour away. Once there the party of 3 became 4 with the addition of Bumblebore, newly free of a Mr Miyage style training camp run by the Wizard Sarumin the Beastmaster, and his trained Firedrake O'Malfoy. Shaemus decided it was time to call on their allies in the Irish forces, specifically the archers. There were 30 to draw upon; but, since they had no notice, I rolled and found only 20 of them were sober. These did report, however, that they had discovered that the Firedrake blood they had collected in whiskey bottles (Raiders of the Orc Baggage Train) could be used to create instant fire arrows. Handy or what!? Sadly though, being hirelings, they could not go into the 3rd level of the Sky City, as I was counting this a level 4 dungeon.

The players returned to the volcano with the Irish Longbowmen and spent some time scouting out a sheltered draw between two ridges that fanned out from the bottom of the volcano. Here they set up camp, left their mounts, and then went back into the tunnel entrance. I was surprised they didn't go right in after the trolls with the archers; but, apparently, intent on avoiding the trolls, they went into the tunnel and made straight for the stairs. None the less a pair of trolls met them before they could do so. These were dispatched with haste, and, facing the prospect of their fellows still being around later, the party raced back and roused the Irish to battle.

The tunnel was about 35 feet wide, with 20 feet of that given over to a channel for water which ultimately came from the glacier above. They got in formation and prepared the give the Trolls a really bad day. Shaemus and Giuseppe held the front rank with their horses, the Irish made 4 ranks of 5, and Bumblebore brought up the rear. Sever took to the air on Convess, skimming over the surface of the water, and very soon found the main body of 10 Trolls heading their way. The Irish started up up their battle hymn:


"Connor is our battle cry,
McGregor inspires us,
Those who for freedom fall
Never shall die.
Trolls are breaking
Shout we exultant
Trolls are beaten,
Ireland is free.
Charge for the old cause
Down with the old foe,
Living or dying
Brovenloft to free."

The Trolls elected to charge, but lost initiative, so the Irish let loose with pass through fire - to little effect. The charging trolls also lost out to the weapon length of the front rank and so had to take shots from Sheamus' Drewsword and Giuseppe's Lance. Finally, then, the trolls could have a go; and the party's front rank, including Sheamus' horse, took a beating, the poor mount suffered maximum damage from a Claw/Claw/Bight routine, and the fighter suddenly found himself on the ground. Even the much tougher plate-clad Bonecrusher suffered a troll bite. 

Following Bumblebore's orders of "wipe the window" and "clean the tunnel', O'Malfoy flew around behind the trolls - who were in a 4/4/2 formation - and breathed his disgusting, but, highly effective, breath weapon over them.

Now, Sever, who had also flown around behind the trolls, charged in on his Pegasus and opened the score for the good guys with a devastating attack.

Even so, at the end of the first round it was looking like a tough fight for the good guys. However, before we moved on to the next round I remembered that, with the archers having had one shot of pass-through fire, they should still get another shot. The discord dice roller really came to the party at this point, and 13 out of 20 arrows hit their targets, mowing down and burning 4 trolls!

Next round, the party, crucially, again won initiative; the archers used up the last of their Firedrake blood arrows to good effect. Somehow, by the end of the round, the last remaining troll turned to flee, only to be stomped by one of Bonecrusher's hooves before it could do so.

By the end I was feeling bad for the trolls; but this total victory, the result of a steady accumulation of advantages acquired in the previous sessions of play, just so happened to be perfect against them in what was actually a random encounter.

"Victory! To be shure to be shure!"



Now that that was over with, and a well stocked lair had been cleared out, the party could finally get back on with the plan for this session.

They travelled up and into the third level of the Sky City and made their way East, to Luro's tower, again without a problem. They took the opportunity to rest and regain some HP via Giuesppe's Lay on Hands. They then set off, bright and early next morning, and followed the same trail along the forest floor that they had blazed last session. The players had worked up a plan for avoiding the weird bladder grabber creatures in the ground, and for the most part this was successful.


The first thing they encountered was another of the 15' tall bird abominations that they had evaded last session. But this time the party had three segments of surprise(!) and there was only one of the beasts, why not have a crack? 

Thanks to Sever the party was more disciplined than these guys

Despite my encouragement the party stayed on mission, and went on to encounter a number of difference species of huge ground birds. To these they projected an intimidating air and in one case brazenly strolled through over 50 Giant Cranes. Only O'Malfoy's leash prevented a disaster when the little firedrake thought it was lunch time.

The highlight of the night was probably when the party realised they had strolled into the lair of a big bunch of vulchlings. These evil and somewhat intelligent creatures got the same treatment from the party, each one striving to be more intimidating than the last. From a reaction roll of 100 I decided that the monsters were so intimidated that they immediately flew off elsewhere, and the PCs smugly continued on.

Finally the party reached their destination, they could see the replica of Castle Irish on a hill beyond the treeline. They had come out to the south, and the escape tunnel entrance was to its east, so they moved on in that direction. Reaching that point they began to search for it; when, suddenly, there was another Achaieraithingy striding towards them; but, lo, the tunnel entrance could be seen, and they had 1 segment of surprise.

They scrambled on their bellies to get inside and found tunnel remarkably clean, according to Bumblebore (who would know). The realised that it was too late to go further without running out of daylight for Luro and his Hawkmen to attack. So, after waiting for the monsters outside to disperse, they confirmed that everything was as expected, and then returned to Luro's tower; to fight another day.


Treasure and XP


Cash

Trolls: 4000 gp 

Monetary XP total = 4000gp

Monsters

12 Trolls:  9,580XP

Items

Troll blood: ???
Potion of Extra Healing: 400XP

Monsters XP Total: 9,580
Monetary XP Total: 4,000
Item XP Total: 400
Total:13,980

Total of 13,980 XP Weighted by Level & any Bonus

Giuseppe (Level 4 ) 4301 XP & 1230 GP
Sever (Level 4 )  4301 XP &  1230GP
Sheamus (Level 3)  3226 XP & 923 GP
Bumblebore (Level 1 + 1 downtime bonus) 2150 XP & 615 GP





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