Campaign: Spellscape II
Date Played: 02/07/17
Approx Time: 2 1/2 hours (approx)
Characters/Players: Captain Chubby (Goblin Alchemist lv. 4), Draco (Minotaur Barbarian lv.4,), Jak (Tengu U.Rogue lv.4,), Physion (Human Gunslinger lv.4,), Royce (Elf Magus lv.4,)
Universal Area: moon of Sian, Highbranch
Format: Tabletop RPG
Rules System: Pathfinder
Challenges Accomplished: PCs got to the ‘ground’ level of Sian w/o getting themselves killed, made allies w/ Boggard tribe
- killed: 12 zombies, 1 6th lv. necromancer, & 2 boggard spearmen
Current XP: 9,000 (started at 4th lv.)
Granted XP: + 2,800
- After months of anticipation, I finally began my Spelljammer campaign for my Monday group. One player was mildly upset because the computer system he used to create his character, crashed. It left him scrambling to re-create his character. We took a long time to make sure everything was kosher then finally began around 9:30. It seemed like we got in a lot more game time than we did, even though we only played 2 1/2 hours (that’s a good thing).
- I opened the game by telling the players that all of their characters were relaxing in various places; drinking, sleeping, etc. (Draco’s player firmly insisted that was cavorting with dancing girls, so we ran with it). I then tell them that everything goes black, and when they wake up again, their heads are spinning, and they are on the floor of a deck of a spelljamming galleon. The ship is on fire and heavily damaged. There are numerous zombies roaming about. Behind them is a second ship in even worse shape, about to explode. Everyone has all their gear, except Captain Chubby, whose hat has fallen off but is right next to him. In addition, Jak has an ugly black rock hanging around his neck on a small steel chain. There are also feathers, blood, and bone on and around Jak. I tell Jak’s player that it almost looks like another Tengu exploded next to him. After a few seconds of ‘WTF, Game Master?’, I tell everyone to roll for initiative.
The campaign begins.
- The PCs start smashing away at the zombies while trying to figure out what’s going on. The ship behind them explodes, sending debris towards the back of the galleon where Physion and Draco are fighting (does 17 dmg. to both!). Soon, a man opens the door from inside the captains quarters. He is dressed in black clothing, with a hood, and is obviously a mage of some sort. He looks around at all of the PCs battling zombies, yells “Shit!”, then goes back inside, closing and locking the doors behind him. Draco takes the zombie he’s tussling with and shoves him over the side of the ship. Then Draco goes over the door and smashes it open with ease with his Earthbreaker hammer. The guy inside throws up his hands and asks to negotiate with Draco before he does anything rash…
- The others have disposed of the other zombies on the ship at this time, and turn to what Draco is doing. Captain Chubby runs up to the doorway, and demands to know how they got on this ship. “What?” asked the mage, “YOU guys were the ones who dragged ME onto the ship!”. At this time the whole ship shakes, and everyone hears sounds of breaking and creaking wood. The PCs forget about story-telling time and demand to know if the mage knows how to get the ground without dying. The mage negotiates for his life, asking the PCs what’s in it for him if he helps them survive. The PCs promise to let the mage goes his own way if he helps get them out of here (w/ a wink and smile). The mage, now satisfied, reaches into his bag and pulls out a feather token for each of them. The mage then goes outside, and jumps over the side of the ship, activating his own token.
- Almost immediately, Draco discards his own feather and dives over the side of the ship, drawing concerned glances from his teammates. Draco’s player declares that he’s going to try to smash into the mage and kill him on the way down. I ask him to make an attack roll, and he succeeds. Draco smashes into the mage, driving one of his horns right through the mage’s eye. The mage was damaged before the hit to begin with (something I was going to reveal at the ship if they had taken a swing at him when they first met). We spend a few minutes debating on whether or not a dead body enchanted with a feather token would float down or not. I rule that it does, for flavor reasons, so Draco surfs the dead guys body down into the trees. As everyone falls, I inform them that they see no solid ground, just giant swamp trees ending in a maze of branches that go underwater.
- The PCs scramble along the huge roots poking out of the water. They do a couple of experiments, quickly figuring out that either they can’t safely touch to the bottom of the lake/sea/ocean, of that there isn’t one. They stay close together and start moving forward, making not of where the parts of the broken spelljammer ships landed. They begin heading towards the wreckage of the back end of the ship they were just on, since that’s where the engine was.
- At the tree branch that held the shaky remains of the ship’s back half, they see a humanoid figure sneaking around in the debris. With everyone else right behind him, Physion draws his gun and yells out to the stranger, letting him know that they are there and they are armed. The stranger casually pokes his head and wanders on over to them. The stranger introduces himself as Moxo. He is covered from head to toe in a cloak and gear (I try to describe him wearing a mask like Kabal from the Mortal Kombat series). From his distinctive gait, Jak can tell that the new stranger is a boggard (His player made a Knowledge: Local roll). Moxo and the players spend a few minutes trying to figure out if the other side is hostile, or more accurately, how hostile. Moxo tells them about a boggard in his village that took off with a spelljammer ship, he’d come out this way to see if the players burning ship was the same. Intrigued, the PCs agree to work with him for now. Moxo leads them back to his village.
- Moxo brings the PCs to Highbranch, a boggard city built between two tress (They are tree frogs, you see…I thought that was worth a chuckle, but none of the players picked up on that). Both trees had several different levels of huts, platforms, etc. built upon then. The branches of both trees intermingled, holding a huge, opaque, spherical object full of water between them. Inside the sphere was another structure, perhaps a castle of some sort. “Cool,” the players remark, but they inquire no further. Moxo takes the PCs up to one of the higher branches on the leftmost tree, where one of the older shamans will hear their story. Moxo tells them that they are other strangers there as well, already guests.
- The PCs arrive at the shaman’s hut. An old boggard druid, Greyscale, sits near the back of the hut, cross-legged on the floor and smoking a pipe. The are other boggards milling about, talking to each other and to Greyscale. There are also three elves in the room, two men and a woman. Moxo introduces the PCs to Greyscale. Greyscale introduces the PCs to the elves, who are named Silvermane, Bluemoon, and Galra. Silvermane turns his nose slightly at the PCs, keeping his arms crossed when they greet him. Bluemoon and Galra are very friendly, although Galra is slightly taken aback when Physion crudely hits on her. Once introductions are done, Greyscale explains more about their current dilemma. These three elves have come from another planet in order to do trade deals with the boggards, and teach them how to craft their own skyships. While the elves were here, an angry young militant boggard named Greenclaw gathered up a few of his friends and hijacked the elves’ ship, taking the fourth elf (an artificer named Galt) with them. It was common knowledge that the elven ship only had enough fuel to fly around sky-wise, that they would need to mine more cinnabryl to have enough energy to fly back into space. Greyscale assumes that Greenclaw took the elven ship to a nearby mine to get cinnabryl, then run off into space with the ship. He explains to the PCs that Greenclaw and his companions were the bulk of the warriors for their tribe, so they have no one to go stop them, and the remaining elves are not warriors, either. Greyscale asks the PCs if they can help; will they go stop Greenclaw and his men and return the elven ship? The elves would be happy to drop the PCs off at the nearest spaceport, and they would earn the Boggard’s thanks.
- I take a break from the table for a bathroom break and to grab a bite to eat. While I am puttering around, I hear the players have a lively discussion about shanking Galt the elf and take off with the ship for themselves. I eat some leftover pork carnitas while they finish.
- Back to the game, the PCs tell Greyscale that they will do this, and will head out in the morning. Greyscale is pleased, tells them to enjoy the rest of their evening in town. Most of the PCs stick around to chat with some of the boggards and the elves again for a bit, before Moxo leads them back to their quarters. On the way out, Draco meets a small, hyperactive boggard named Spaz. Spaz quickly takes to the big minotaur, who honestly isn’t too far from him in mental age. They separate from the rest of the party and run out into Highbranch, getting into mischief. The other PCs go back to their quarters and spend some more time plotting their morning heist before getting some rest. This is only broken up by Physion’s impulsive decision to go scout town out to get laid. I tell his player that there are only boggards out there, Galra wasn’t interested. “That’s fine,” he replies. I tell him to make some Bluff rolls, because I’m not role-playing this. Physion successfully gets laid by a frog-lady. She tells him to call her in the morning. He does not.
- Meanwhile, Spaz and Draco are running about, having great fun hitting people with sticks. The town of frog-men are scared shitless of the huge minotaur with a stick, so they keep running from him. Draco is beginning to get bored with the more chasing and less hitting, so Spaz suggests they go visit his favorite shopkeeper, an old boggard named Big Bag. They both go into Big Bag’s shop, finding a grizzled old frog-man who looks like the frog version of Mad-Eye Moody from the Harry Potter series. He loudly welcomes them in and flails his arms about. He also offers them some kind of lotion he is rubbing himself with, claiming that it is ‘his mother’s recipe’. Both Spaz and Draco decline. Enough with that, Big Bag starts pulling out the interesting stuff. The very first thing Big Bag pulls out is a magical snow globe. The snow globe had a tiny scene of a plantation inside, with farmhouses, fields, etc. When someone shook it, then let the snow drift back down, inside the globe a tiny mass of figures would come out, wandering about the plantation and began working the farm. Despite the fact I hinted that Big Bag had many more items to show off, Draco began immediately entranced with the snow globe and wouldn’t leave until he could trade for it. Finally Big Bag took some of the rubies Draco had with him, and Draco said by to Spaz and rushed out of the shop. Draco made his way back to where the others where getting ready to sleep and he showed everyone his snow glob. When the others seemed less impressed, he got really serious and pointed at the tiny people inside the globe, then said, “I AM THEIR GOD!”.
- The PCs awake the next morning, and gathered their things together. Moxo is sent to fetch them and lead them out to where the cinnabryl mine is. He, too, is subjected to a snow globe demonstration, and another insistence that Draco is the god of these tiny people. Moxo just nods in agreement and moves everyone along. Moxo and the PCs travel for a few hours, then Moxo stops them, saying that the mine is nearby. Everyone gets into position and begins straining to get a good Perception of the area. Two root branches meet at a hole/cave in an enormous tree, Moxo explains that the ‘cave’ goes down into the tree until it hits rock and turns out into a fairly regular mine. the place used to be inhabited by dwarves, back when it was active. There are two boggard spearmen standing guard by the door to the cave, one on each side, one on each branch. The PCs try to stealth up a bit until Physion horribly misses a Stealth roll, then everyone just goes beserk! The PCs make short work of the two spearmen, who are out-numbered. It is getting late, so I stop the game there for the night as the PCs enter the mine entrance.