DnD – Elephant retrieval service – part 3

After a six month or so hiatus our dnd group finally got back together.

Instead of writing it up myself I’m going to be lazy and promote Greg’s blog instead as he has written up everything so far:

https://gregwfb.wordpress.com/2017/10/06/dd-adventure-elephant-retrieval-service-part-three/

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D&D – Evolution of Knoffles Silvertop

Like Greg, I have been enjoying our D&D sessions so much that, I recently forked out and purchased the 5th ed players handbook. I can’t say I have gotten too far into it at present but from the brief look, I do like all the quotes from the old forgotten realms and Dragonlance books I read many years ago. Definitely is taking me back on a nostalgia trip!


Like many companies, You can download the basic rules from their website (I say basic, it’s the complete rule book and be prepared to print a lot of pages!). What the players handbook offers you is a lot more choice in the classes you can select, it also opens up an increased number of specialisations within the classes that were available on the free download. To put this into context, I will talk about the new path I am taking Knoffles down.

At level 3 a fighter can choose a Martial Archetype to specialise in. In the basic rules you have 1 option, that of a champion, which at level 3 means you crit on a 19-20 rather than a standard 20 (more options open at later levels). This was the route I had taken as it was the only one we had. The handbook offers two other paths and our DM, Steve, has agreed that myself and Greg can change our paths as we are only level 3 at present.

Battlemaster. This specialisation allows you to pick 3 bonus skills from a list of about 10. It includes things such as riposte, which allows you to counter attack an enemy. It is definitely intriguing and if I were more combat orientated rather than defensive I may give this ago. However I wanted a bit more versatility in my character and choose to instead go with the final option:

Eldritch Knight. This route opens up limited spell casting with access granted to two of the eight schools of magic (Evocation and Abjuration or Damage and Protection). You also have the ability to bind up to two weapons so you can never be disarmed and can summon one of the bound weapons (good for if you need to change from say bludgeoning to slashing.

At the basic level you can pick any 2 cantrips from the Wizard selection (going up to 3 at level 10) and you can learn 3 spells (going up to a max of 13 at level 20), two of which must be from the Evo/Abj school. It’s worth noting that although you know 3 spells, at lvl 3 you can only memorise 2 of them at one time. 

With a wizard already in the party, specialising in fire damage I wanted to avoid picking anything he already had. I also wanted to pick items that complemented my class or that I felt we were missing as a group. So with that said, all that was left was to pick the spells.

Cantrips

Ray of Frost (Evo).  

A damage attack that not only deals the polar opposite of fire but also slows an attacker to prevent them getting into melee with the group’s ranged characters

True Strike (Div).

A buff that will give me advantage in my first melee attack. 

I need to check this, as it is in the divination school but my reading is that any cantrip can be selected but it is the spells that in the main need to be from Evo/Abj.

Spells 

Learn languages (writing this on the train so the name might be incorrect, I’ll come back and edit it if so)

 A ritual that lasts 1 hour and allows me to understand/read any language. This is one for the team and something that should help out as we have been caught out on several occasions. This is my selection for the non Evo/Abj spell allowed at lvl 3. You can select another at around lvl 7/8.

Shield (Abj)

When hit, this spell adds +5 AC to the Character it was cast on. If used on myself it would push me up to 27 and make me an Unstoppable force! (Or meat shield).

Thunderwave (Evo)

Casts a 15ft wall that shoots forward and causes lightning damage to all enemies it moves over and pushes the enemy back 10ft. If the enemy pass their saving throw, they aren’t pushed back and take reduced damage. Again I picked this as I wasn’t sure if the others had this type of damage, so gives us more versatility and the push back helps keep the ranged members of the party safe. The drawback to this spell is that it creates a massive thunderclap when cast. Can anyone say, “announce your location?”

A final decision will need to be made on which 2 spells to be taken in the quest but i am happy that the spell and cantrip selection add a good versatility to the group and my character whilst maintaining the protectionist role Knoffles fulfills in the group dynamic.

D&D – Elephant Retrieval Services part 1

D&D Adventure 2 Session 1 – 10/06/16 at SELWG +++ High Elf Cleric- Matt Human Wizard- Pete Hill Dwarf Warrior- Mark Wood Elf Rogue- Greg DM- Steve +++ Elephant retrieval services +++ After our successful first mission we returned to the city in good spirits. While most of us spent our winnings on new items, […]

via D&D Adventure- Elephant retrieval service — It’s a small world

D&D – Bandit Hunt

One of our D&D players has been writing up our adventures on his blog: Its a small world (www.Gregwfb.wordpress.com) and in the next few posts I am going to share these (being lazy it saves me from writing them up and he’s done an excellent job)

+++ Bandits have raided the local city. A large force of mercenaries was dispatched to teach them a lesson. In the din of battle one bandit escaped, albeit with a wounded leg. In an effort to dissuade banditry the guilds have placed a large reward on this bandits head, and a plucky group of inexperienced […]

via D&D Adventure- Bandit Hunt — It’s a small world

Baited breath and other ramblings

Now that I know that the stage one group games have finished, I’ve found myself checking emails everyday waiting for the final results to come through. The main reason is because I want to see who I will be facing next. It’s only the first stage and I have an over abundance of anticipation… sad really 😉.

I actually hope that someone knocks me out of the top group (where I’m currently sitting based on the points as at the last update). This is because it would mean not playing Neil, Dan and Paul. I have no issue playing them as this always helps improve my game, as they are all great players and sports. However, being in the second group would mean I would likely to be playing more of the club members I’ve not managed to get a game with to date.

With the cut off for the bonus points for early submission of second stage army list due in a couple of days, I have sent this to Steve to maximise the points haul. The problem with blogging, is that it is now really difficult not to start a posting the list and talking about why you chose what you did. With lists potentially being submitted up until the 3/4 November, I’ll have to wait a bit longer…

So what else has been going on that is worth mentioning?

D&D

We had another session last week where we reached the island and started to clear/explore a smaller island off its coast. I’m not going into too much detail, as with a second d&d group due to start, there maybe som cross over in quests.

We have also decided to try and meet up once a month during the week to continue, as it was easier to all get together. This will either be at someone’s house or possibly Warboar in Bromley.

Warhammer.org

Has closed its forum to new members siting that newer recruits just seem to troll and all resources can be found on other online areas. Whilst true, it is another warhammer general forum that has appears to have effectively given up, which is a real shame. I will say this occurred and I found out a good month or two ago, I just hadn’t posted it.

Many clubs (ours included) used it to post about upcoming events and tournaments and for participants to sign up. With no new member sign ups it hampers new players from doing so. Not so much of an issue for whfb, 9th age or maybe kow, where the player base is likely to remain fairly unchanged and already registered but probably will hit the new AoS players (maybe that is another underlying reason for the change!)

Warseer Reborn

After going dark for more than a number of months, their twitter feed has announced that the site will be back up on 1 December.

Kings of War

Released their latest updated FAQ a month or so ago and can be found here: Mantic rules and downloads

The Ninth Age

Is due to start releasing version 1.2. This will include updates to the army books slightly changing the current core/rare/special selection criteria and sweeping changes to the Magic system, cutting the number of paths from 20 to 10 (amongst other things). They have also produced their first e-zine which can be found here: The 9th Scroll

Trying out new games

Speaking to a few members of the club, I’ve lined up a some people to try out both KoW and 9th Age. It may not occur until the whfb league is finished but we are looking to run a few 1000pt games as that way we will be able to get in a few in an evening with us each taking a turn whilst the others watching and rule checking.

I’ve been watching a lot of videos from Oncebitten360, on YouTube recently, who was/is one of the 3 key writers of the beast herd army book for 9th age and he puts across the whole process and what they are trying to accomplish in a very good way and this has definitely been one of the reasons for the increased interest (enough to try it out anyway).

Dungeons and Dragons

Last year Steve M started a D&D campaign and having not played it since I was 14 or so I jumped at the chance to give it another go and joined Pete, Greg and Matt in making a suitable party. Pete chose a less than savory human wizard with a penchant for looking after himself and a slight issue with starting fires. Matt went a High Elf cleric. Greg was a Wood Elf Rogue (Galindan) and I rolled a Hill Dwarf Fighter, Knoffles Weaselbane Silvertop, handily portrayed by this little fellow below.  (Weaselbane was added after he one shotted a giant Weasel in a night-time encounter in our first adventure).

With another D&D night coming up, I thought i’d post a bit of character background and Greg has also provided a recap of the second adventure.

Dwarf Lord.jpg

Background of Knoffles Silvertop

Knoffles strode along the dusty track, cracked paving stones just visible under the layer of mud, shaking his head at lack of upkeep of the road. The last of the hills receded behind him, as he strode along purposefully. With each step his ancestral home was left further behind, as the youngest scion of the Silvertop Clan made his way into the world to pay back his family’s debt. Overhead storm clouds raced across the sky, the frequent lightning strikes causing his main of red hair to glow. The immensity of his task weighed on his mind, “humans are so short lived, how am I to find one orphaned child amongst a continent of them”.

Standing at a 4‘ 9” and weighing in at 187 lbs, Knoffles is a giant of a dwarf. Being the youngest son of Borek Silvertop he lacked many of the responsibilities required of his older siblings instead turning his hand to the martial arts and joining a conglomerate militia of the local clans. His status as a Silvertop ensured his prominence in the organisation but his natural proficiency at weapons and down to earth nature won both the admiration and respect of the other warriors.

The Silvertops are a prosperous clan, their wealth gained mainly through mining and trading.  Knoffles was named after the human, Knoffles Stormwind, who saved Borek’s life when his trade caravan was attacked by goblins. The two forged a firm friendship during the weeks spent tracking down the beasts to their lair where they slaughtered them all, wiping the stain of their existence from the world. The two started a trade agreement that greatly enriched the two families. Marak Stormwind, Knoffle’s son, was forged from the same mould as his father and maintained close contact with the Silvertops continuing the trade enterprise.

Word has recently been received that the Stormwind family have been murdered but rumours persisted that their daughter, Leah had been taken. Borek has sent Knoffles to find out if the rumours are true and if so to track down Leah and ensure her safety.

 

Recap of the 2nd D&D Adventure

Greg has put me to shame (again) in another superb narrative write up. This time of our latest adventure, so we know where we were up to after our extended break.

Session 1 – 10/06/16 at SELWG

+++

 High Elf Cleric- Matt

Human Wizard- Pete

Hill Dwarf Warrior- Mark

Wood Elf Rogue- Greg

DM- Steve

+++

Elephant retrieval services

 +++

After our successful first mission we returned to the city in good spirits. While most of us spent our winnings on new items, Pete actually put his time to good use and began to study the mysterious parchment we had found on our first quest. Using his history knowledge he was able to work out that the parchment contained primordial runes and was related to Demons. He also worked out some words on it.  Having no idea what they meant he carried on his research. He was able to determine that the parchment referred to a specific location on a map, a land inhabited by giant spiders and ravens much bigger than normal. Furthermore he determined that this land was somewhere distant in the north- over 120 miles away. Finally there was an 8 armed symbol on the map. It seems this was the resting place of a mighty warrior who had wielded many magical weapons and artifacts. Although not entirely clear it seemed that this island was rich with treasure and certainly worth pursuing.

Flush with this newfound knowledge Pete was chuffed and decided to check on the progress of the war elephant he had ordered previously. He visited the Elven trader who had sold it to him and discovered that the Elephant needed to be picked up from an island far out to the west of the city. This island was at present fairly inhospitable and a powerful wizard was shortly preparing a force to head over and reclaim the island and set up a seat of power for himself. The wizard was paying 100 gold pieces per day for this task and the Elven trader was willing to waive the delivery charge on the Elephant if our party joined this expeditionary force.

We had some debate as to whether to accept this side mission or press on North to follow up on the parchment. We eventually decided that leveling up on the side mission wasn’t a bad idea, and of course Pete wanted his elephant!

We had 3 days in the city before the expedition was leaving, and we spent it gambling and drinking. The Wizard won 300 gold but the Wood elf Galindan, ever the gambler lost 250 gold pieces- not a good start! The stingy dwarf Knoffles wasn’t tempted by this gambling in he slightest and refused to partake.

Finally making it down to the docks we discovered a fine Elven galleon bristling with weapons and crew members. We set sail and as soon as we were out of the harbor the patron of the expedition, the mighty Wizard, brought out a cauldron and conjured up an air elemental to speed us on our way.

Adventuring at sea had a few fun mechanics. We would firstly test for the weather each day, hoping to avoid the doldrums or any severe storms. Secondly we would test for an encounter, and the likelihood of this increased after each passing week.

After five days uneventful sailing we encountered a surprise- a mighty giant octopus was attacking us. Everyone was itching to get into a fight and the Octopus was slain in a single round of combat, the spells of our party proving particularly destructive, backed up by effective Wood Elf bow fire from the crows nest and a mighty swing of the dwarfs hammer. This was enough to increase us all to level 3.

After more days at sea the weather turned for the worse and a storm set in. We also saw a mysterious flock of very large birds flying overhead, but they ignored us.

Finally we encountered our second battle at sea, this time against a mighty five-headed Hydra which towered over our ship. This was a tough battle but we kept the same tactics as before and ground the creature down. One spell from the cleric caused a mighty 25 hit points, and backed up by some bow fire from the crew we eventually destroyed two of the heads. Not wanting to suffer any more the Hydra slunk off into the deep (Steve later told us we had caused over 80 hit points but the Hyrda still had almost 100 left!). The crew of the ship took a bit of a battering in this battle and about 7 of them were eaten by the Hydra. Thankfully the Hydra lost an attack each time a head was killed so we finally ground it down.

The last few days were fairly uneventful, the wind turned in our favour and we made good speed. Eventually, after 21 days sailing the cry went up for “Land ho” and we sighted the island.

It was getting late at that point so a good time to stop for the evening.

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