Wednesday 29 May 2024

Trollopulous Adjusted Session 67 (Machodor #33); The Pizza Slice of Doom

a quadrant from the Sky City
        

Timekeeping


This session took place on 25/04/2024, and the PCs adventured for 4 days.

Player Characters Present


Giuseppe (Level 6 Paladin of Rome, Brovenloft, E) with henchmen Bishoy & Tawadros (F2)
Sever (Level 6 Pegasus Corps Ranger of Machodor, E)
Comfort Rod (Level 1 Cleric, S ) 
Red (Level 1 Paladin, E ) RIP
Gurt the Green (Level 1 Paladin, E )
Godleve (Level 5 Cleric of Machodor, E ) 





Introduction 


In the aftermath of the Battle Braunstein in the previous session, one area captured the imagination of the players; the quadrant of the Sky City which had fallen from the top of the extinct volcano. This structure now rested on a ledge part way down the side of the volcano and, due to its shape and precarious position, had been given the nickname "The Pizza Slice of Doom". I never had plans for the party to explore this location, which they had avoided since last year. However, downtime chat indicated that the players wanted to go there, so what was it like now? From a DM's perspective this was a huge dungeon-restocking exercise, along with a change to the entire structure based on recent events. Actually drawing up such a map would be way too much prep; but, with a few simple modifications fed into Appendix A, along with a reshuffle of the encounter tables I had previously allocated to each level, both the players and the DM got to discover what was going on in this location as the session played out. I can tell you, this is more fun as a DM than if I could have spent the time to fully map it out in advance.

Downtime


Another loose end from the BB was a room beneath the Fortress of Fear containing hundreds of armoured mannequins, one of which had sold for a princely sum in St. Raul. However, the Robopriest (Patron of the fortress) was quite protective of this room, and did not take well to some newer characters asking to examine it. This did not rule out access to the caves the party had previously explored which lead to Lord Inferno's lair, but for some reason it seemed to put the players off that choice and they instead explored the PSoD.

Session Report


It was a clear day and the party made their way from the Fortress of Fear to Castle Irish without any issue or encounter with Harold's (independent mercenary company [aka bandit] Patron) men. There they found that Sheamus (who's player had wanted to return to the crashed Sky City for ages) was busy with other matters; but they did learn from Connor McGregor (Irish Patron):


Connor tells you that there was a report of an intruder in the area where he keeps the energy projection equipment taken from the broken sky city quadrant [during the Battle Braunstein], "The boys are calling it the 'Pizza Slice of Doom', to be shure". There was no sign of anything missing but there were some black feathers found. He suggests that if you get the chance to go back to the PSoD and see if you can turn up anything.

Having already made the decision to do so, they rested at the castle and in the morning made their way to the base of the extinct volcano where the sky city quadrant had crashed down into the valley. There they made contact with the Irish troops posted there and explained their mission.

Without Sheamus and his rocket cycle they couldn't simply fly up there to the top, so they set about searching through the rocky debris, and here they unearthed the entrance to the internal rock-cut stairs that previously they had climbed up into the inside of the Sky City; but now, with quadrant gone and the other laying on the side of the mountain, when they reached the top the view had greatly changed, and they looked out into empty space to the west and east.

Peering over the ledge to the west, they could see that the broken off sky city quadrant landed in such a way that it lent against the volcano at a 70 degree angle. The narrow end facing them was only 20 feet or so down and this closeness allowed them so see what the damage had done to their ability to access the inside. In short the original access tunnel to level 1, the maintenance level, though damaged, was still accessible. Level 2, living areas and tech centres, was inaccessible; and level 3, the huge open forest level, had been squashed in such a way that the roof now touched the very tree tops, but there was still room for human sized creatures to enter.

The party chose to approach level 3 and climb their way down through the trees, looking for trouble and at the same time wary of the bizarre bird-creatures that they encountered on this level previously.

After a few hundred feet of pushing and pulling their way down through the trees, the floor suddenly bent upwards, probably as a result of the impact, allowing for much easier travel onwards. They soon passed a section that dropped down vertically and connected with a "level access tube" that was now effectively horizontal, and they recognised it would lead them to level 2 if they followed it. Instead of exploring that way, they stuck to the easier, almost level, travel and kept on through the trees until they found a large clearing. Within the clearing was a female Roc (the mate of the one killed last year in session #7) which was trying to get out of the relatively enclosed space, but could not do so as the ceiling was bent in at this point and it was too big to work its way out through the trees.

The party had one segment of surprise and chose to retreat to discuss their options. While they were huddling and in hushed discussion, Red chose to go forward into the clearing and lay down his weapon in a gesture of good will. The reaction roll suggested that the Roc took this as a gesture of 'dinner is served'.

Red makes a feathered friend


The creature charged and its bite was enough to send Red's HP into the, erm, red; unfortunately by just enough to kill him.

Their hand forced, the rest of the party battled the creature and they were pretty beat up by the time they had killed it. Now there were many enquiries as to the choice pieces of the creature they should collect (it was like stumbling into an episode of dungeon meshi). They began cutting and collecting until a score of Blood Ravens, attracted by the noise, began appearing in the surrounding trees. The party pulled out with what they could carry, including what was left of Red.

They forced their way back outside and then returned to the Irish camp, again via the stairs, and rested their tired legs. While there they picked up a plucky young Rogue called Cassian.

They climbed up the long stair again (their thighs were going to be killing them during downtime) and this time avoided the forest level and went down the level 1 access tunnel. (Later I discovered this was a misunderstanding and they thought they were still starting on the forest level).

Once inside they saw that it was very beat up, but still navigable, the damaged metal wall panels and such making the 70 degree incline relatively easy to descend its 240' length.

The session had been a bit of a stop-start affair, but now things really kicked into gear. The party went on an exploration and room clearing sequence that saw them map out five rooms, a few corridors, some secret doors. They ran into some Kenku Hatchlings which were barely a speed bump, before finding 3 aggressive metal-clad borer beetles in a hidden room with some good treasure. 

While gathering up the loot the beetles were guarding they noted a bored out entrance hole in the far end of the room. This, they figured, must have been made by the beetles when they entered the room. Should they explore further? No, instead they chose to ensure they had the resources of spells, hit points, and real time available to get back out again and down to the Irish camp, which they managed without incident.


Treasure and XP


Trollopulous Adjusted Session 67 (Machodor #33)

Treasure & Items
300pp
4 Gems sold in Schloss Ragnar for 1950gp
Shield vs Missiles 400xp

Total XP 3450

Monsters

Roc 7500XP
4 Kenku Hatchlings 40 XP
25 Kenku eggs 75 XP
3 Robot Boring Beetles 645 XP

Total  XP 8260 


11,710 XP &  3450 GP Assignment weighted by level


Giuseppe (Level 6, E ) 2300 XP & 941 GP
 Tawdros (Level 2 hench, E) 835  XP & 156 GP
 Bishoy (Level 2 hench, E) 835  XP & 156 GP
Godlevel (Level 5, E) 12143 XP & 784 GP
Sever(Level 6, E ) 2300 XP & 941 GP
Comfort Rod (Level 1, E ) 1515  XP & 156 GP
Cassian* (Level 1, E ) 265  XP & 156 GP
Gurt the Green (Level 1, E ) 1515  XP & 156 GP

* wasn't there for the Roc


Graveyard


Red (Human Paladin Level 1) always popular with the ladies, he was eaten up by a female Roc in the Pizza Slice of Doom during session #67

Jacques Ocular (Level 1 Magic User), a fat green worm burrowed into his head and turned him into a Son Of Kyuss in Brovenloft in Session #43

Pino (Dwarf Footman level 0), Killed by a Frost Giant axe in the head in session #39

Paro (Dwarf Fighter/Thief level 2/2) , Killed by Winter Wolves and frozen in session #39

Zabib (1/2 Elf Fighter/Magic User level 1/1), Killed by Frost Giant rocks in downtime prior to session #39


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