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Session report: Bardic fun in Whispers of the Vampire's Bl..

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Anonymous
April 13, 2005 2:34:20 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Contains some spoilers for the WotVB adventure for Eberron...

The party:

half-vampire paladin
half-orc cleric
elf ranger
tiefling rogue
human wizard (paladin's cohort)
necropolitan bard (my character)

A few sessions after this campaign started, we have (a bit clunkily)
crossed over from some undefined generic D&D-land into Eberron, and the
DM is is running Whispers of the Vampire's Blade (adapted, since we're
8th-9th level, and the adventure is for 4th, I think). We were offered a
job by the Dark Lanterns (Breland's intelligence): to capture an ex-
agent that has apparently gone rogue and stolen a magic sword. Between
beeing a tall, blond, wolfish-looking bish type in dark clothes,
travelling in a spiked carriage, and only coming out at night, Lucan
(the agent's name) is now apparently a vampire.

We've had one session of overland chase after the carriage (again, no
teleport at 9th level... :)  ) until we finally caught up with Lucan and
his travelling companions, his sister and their driver. Although they
escaped, I found the session memorable for being one of the rare
instances of D&D combat that didn't end up with one side being
completely wiped out. It helped that there were no deaths, either, even
though we came close (trying to attack a sorceress who knows fireball
from 500+ ft. away can get ugly). That was last session.

This session, we crossed over from Breland to Zilargo and realized that
we weren't going to catch up with the villains before they reached their
goal: the embassy of Aundair, where a masked ball was to be held.

So, to recap: we were trying to find a vampire, at a masked ball, held
by the embassy of Nation #3, in Nation #2, working for Nation #1. Bard
heaven, pretty much.

First we had to get into the ball uninvited, which we ended up doing by
the rogue filching some of the invitations from the box the guards were
putting them in after receiving them from the guests. I was kind of
disappointed with that, since with a bluff modifier of +46 (glibness is
just wacky!) I expected to be able to talk the guards into letting us in
without any invitations at all. Apparenty, the DM ruled that although
the gnome guards would believe pretty much any story I came up with,
they had orders only to admit people with invitations, and orders were
orders. Even if it was the Queen of Aundair herself disguised as a male
bard that came without invitations (which is something quite doable with
bluff +46). Eh.

But boy, was I paid back at the ball proper! Combining detect undead,
detect evil, the paladin's Vampire Hunter feat and good old fashioned
mingling, we located Lucan and his sister. I insisted on first warning
our hostess (rumored to be Aundairian intelligence!) of our mission,
then took the stage. I fascinated Lucan, his sister, and the best
looking woman in the room (three people's my limit, and I only needed
two, so why let it go to waste?), suggested the sister not to fight and
suggested Lucan to surrender to us.

With a perform check good enough, according to the PHB, to eventually
attract extraplanar patrons, I had captured our prey, avoided violence
in the Aundairan embassy, and became the star of the ball! As my party-
mates were peacefully ushering Lucan out, people came to shake my hand,
the best looking woman took my tavern room number, and all was well...

.... until the cleric, the ranger and Lucan were stopped at the front
door by just-arrived guests identifying themselves as Aundairian
intelligence, demanding we hand Lucan over. To which Lucan, being a
vicious vampire, responed by drawing his badass fear-causing confusion-
casting black-steel-and-green-runes sword and cutting one of the
Aundairains in one blow.

Then all hell broke loose, and both Lucan's sister and himself slipped
from our grasp again, she by loosing herself in the panicking crowd, and
he by turning to mist and flying away... despite being under a
suggestion to surrender to us.

I swear, it was as if the Aundairian foursome were PCs in some Bizarro
mirror of our game. For once, *once*, an objective is achieved without
violence, and enter a clueless foursome whose plan to apprehend a
vampiric spy consists of saying "surrender, or die" and rolling
initiative... so the vampire just turns into mist and is gone.
Apparently, Aundairian intelligence... isn't.

And now we're off after Lucan again, after being pointed towards a
certain skyship he's been planning to take by the Aundairian ambassador.

But I think it's telling that I'm having great fun despite having been
screwed over by Lucan for the second time!

Oh, one notable detail: before slipping away, Lucan seemed a bit glassy-
eyed and stiff, like he was being dominated. I'm starting to entertain
the notion that he isn't a vampire after all, but is just a patsy for
the sword... if that turns out to be correct, the adventure title might
be a bit too spoiler-y. But then, it hasn't even occured to us until
now, until we've had other tips like Lucan apparently being susceptible
to enchantment and the sword being rather... well, vampiric- and evil-
looking.

I'm really looking forward to the next session...


--
Jasin Zujovic
jzujovic@inet.hr
April 14, 2005 3:58:16 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Jasin Zujovic wrote:
> Contains some spoilers for the WotVB adventure for Eberron...
>
> The party:
>
> half-vampire paladin
> half-orc cleric
> elf ranger
> tiefling rogue
> human wizard (paladin's cohort)
> necropolitan bard (my character)
>
> A few sessions after this campaign started, we have (a bit clunkily)
> crossed over from some undefined generic D&D-land into Eberron, and the
> DM is is running Whispers of the Vampire's Blade (adapted, since we're
> 8th-9th level, and the adventure is for 4th, I think). We were offered a
> job by the Dark Lanterns (Breland's intelligence): to capture an ex-
> agent that has apparently gone rogue and stolen a magic sword. Between
> beeing a tall, blond, wolfish-looking bish type in dark clothes,
> travelling in a spiked carriage, and only coming out at night, Lucan
> (the agent's name) is now apparently a vampire.
>
> We've had one session of overland chase after the carriage (again, no
> teleport at 9th level... :)  ) until we finally caught up with Lucan and
> his travelling companions, his sister and their driver. Although they
> escaped, I found the session memorable for being one of the rare
> instances of D&D combat that didn't end up with one side being
> completely wiped out. It helped that there were no deaths, either, even
> though we came close (trying to attack a sorceress who knows fireball
> from 500+ ft. away can get ugly). That was last session.
>
> This session, we crossed over from Breland to Zilargo and realized that
> we weren't going to catch up with the villains before they reached their
> goal: the embassy of Aundair, where a masked ball was to be held.
>
> So, to recap: we were trying to find a vampire, at a masked ball, held
> by the embassy of Nation #3, in Nation #2, working for Nation #1. Bard
> heaven, pretty much.
>
> First we had to get into the ball uninvited, which we ended up doing by
> the rogue filching some of the invitations from the box the guards were
> putting them in after receiving them from the guests. I was kind of
> disappointed with that, since with a bluff modifier of +46 (glibness is
> just wacky!) I expected to be able to talk the guards into letting us in
> without any invitations at all. Apparenty, the DM ruled that although
> the gnome guards would believe pretty much any story I came up with,
> they had orders only to admit people with invitations, and orders were
> orders. Even if it was the Queen of Aundair herself disguised as a male
> bard that came without invitations (which is something quite doable with
> bluff +46). Eh.
>
> But boy, was I paid back at the ball proper! Combining detect undead,
> detect evil, the paladin's Vampire Hunter feat and good old fashioned
> mingling, we located Lucan and his sister. I insisted on first warning
> our hostess (rumored to be Aundairian intelligence!) of our mission,
> then took the stage. I fascinated Lucan, his sister, and the best
> looking woman in the room (three people's my limit, and I only needed
> two, so why let it go to waste?), suggested the sister not to fight and
> suggested Lucan to surrender to us.
>
> With a perform check good enough, according to the PHB, to eventually
> attract extraplanar patrons, I had captured our prey, avoided violence
> in the Aundairan embassy, and became the star of the ball! As my party-
> mates were peacefully ushering Lucan out, people came to shake my hand,
> the best looking woman took my tavern room number, and all was well...
>
> ... until the cleric, the ranger and Lucan were stopped at the front
> door by just-arrived guests identifying themselves as Aundairian
> intelligence, demanding we hand Lucan over. To which Lucan, being a
> vicious vampire, responed by drawing his badass fear-causing confusion-
> casting black-steel-and-green-runes sword and cutting one of the
> Aundairains in one blow.
>
> Then all hell broke loose, and both Lucan's sister and himself slipped
> from our grasp again, she by loosing herself in the panicking crowd, and
> he by turning to mist and flying away... despite being under a
> suggestion to surrender to us.
>
> I swear, it was as if the Aundairian foursome were PCs in some Bizarro
> mirror of our game. For once, *once*, an objective is achieved without
> violence, and enter a clueless foursome whose plan to apprehend a
> vampiric spy consists of saying "surrender, or die" and rolling
> initiative... so the vampire just turns into mist and is gone.
> Apparently, Aundairian intelligence... isn't.
>
> And now we're off after Lucan again, after being pointed towards a
> certain skyship he's been planning to take by the Aundairian ambassador.
>
> But I think it's telling that I'm having great fun despite having been
> screwed over by Lucan for the second time!
>
> Oh, one notable detail: before slipping away, Lucan seemed a bit glassy-
> eyed and stiff, like he was being dominated. I'm starting to entertain
> the notion that he isn't a vampire after all, but is just a patsy for
> the sword... if that turns out to be correct, the adventure title might
> be a bit too spoiler-y. But then, it hasn't even occured to us until
> now, until we've had other tips like Lucan apparently being susceptible
> to enchantment and the sword being rather... well, vampiric- and evil-
> looking.
>
> I'm really looking forward to the next session...
>
>
Now that sounds like fun.
Anonymous
April 14, 2005 8:37:21 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

In article <MPG.1cc6664662b3722f989a15@news.iskon.hr>,
Jasin Zujovic <jzujovic@inet.hr> wrote:
>I swear, it was as if the Aundairian foursome were PCs in some Bizarro
>mirror of our game. For once, *once*, an objective is achieved without
>violence, and enter a clueless foursome whose plan to apprehend a
>vampiric spy consists of saying "surrender, or die" and rolling
>initiative... so the vampire just turns into mist and is gone.
>Apparently, Aundairian intelligence... isn't.
>
>And now we're off after Lucan again, after being pointed towards a
>certain skyship he's been planning to take by the Aundairian ambassador.
>
>But I think it's telling that I'm having great fun despite having been
>screwed over by Lucan for the second time!

It seems to me you were screwed over by the DM, not by Lucan. He just didn't
want the NPC to be captured "so easily".
--
"Yo' ideas need to be thinked befo' they are say'd" - Ian Lamb, age 3.5
http://www.cs.queensu.ca/~dalamb/ qucis->cs to reply (it's a long story...)
Anonymous
April 14, 2005 10:36:19 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

David Alex Lamb wrote:
> In article <MPG.1cc6664662b3722f989a15@news.iskon.hr>,
> Jasin Zujovic <jzujovic@inet.hr> wrote:
>> I swear, it was as if the Aundairian foursome were PCs in some
>> Bizarro mirror of our game. For once, *once*, an objective is
>> achieved without violence, and enter a clueless foursome whose plan
>> to apprehend a vampiric spy consists of saying "surrender, or die"
>> and rolling initiative... so the vampire just turns into mist and is
>> gone. Apparently, Aundairian intelligence... isn't.
>>
>> And now we're off after Lucan again, after being pointed towards a
>> certain skyship he's been planning to take by the Aundairian
>> ambassador.
>>
>> But I think it's telling that I'm having great fun despite having
>> been screwed over by Lucan for the second time!
>
> It seems to me you were screwed over by the DM, not by Lucan. He
> just didn't want the NPC to be captured "so easily".

Nope. Those guys are scripted to turn up, plus Lucan, being a vampire,
shouldn't have been subject to Suggestion in the first place.

(Not the DM, I've just read the module).

--
Mark.
Anonymous
April 15, 2005 1:03:30 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

David Alex Lamb wrote:
> Jasin Zujovic wrote:
> >
<snip Trolanport events from WotVB>
> >
> > And now we're off after Lucan again, after being pointed
> > towards a certain skyship he's been planning to take by
> > the Aundairian ambassador.
> >
> > But I think it's telling that I'm having great fun
> > despite having been screwed over by Lucan for the second
> > time!
>
> It seems to me you were screwed over by the DM, not by
> Lucan. He just didn't want the NPC to be captured "so
> easily".

The adventure is extremely heavy-handed about a lot of things, chief
among them the fact that Lucan's always supposed to get away, until
the final "dungeon". When we played it, our DM changed a couple
things to let it be a lot less so, and was prepared to let us capture
Lucan if we could. Even so, none of us liked the adventure.

My character (Aeron ir'Wynarn, son of Ryger ir'Wynarn of the Lhazaar
Principalities) still wants to stop doing all this "adventurer" stuff,
and go pirate himself control of Thronehold. :D 

--
Nik
- remove vermin from email address to reply.
Anonymous
April 15, 2005 2:45:59 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

dalamb@qucis.queensu.ca wrote:

> >I swear, it was as if the Aundairian foursome were PCs in some Bizarro
> >mirror of our game. For once, *once*, an objective is achieved without
> >violence, and enter a clueless foursome whose plan to apprehend a
> >vampiric spy consists of saying "surrender, or die" and rolling
> >initiative... so the vampire just turns into mist and is gone.
> >Apparently, Aundairian intelligence... isn't.
> >
> >And now we're off after Lucan again, after being pointed towards a
> >certain skyship he's been planning to take by the Aundairian ambassador.
> >
> >But I think it's telling that I'm having great fun despite having been
> >screwed over by Lucan for the second time!
>
> It seems to me you were screwed over by the DM, not by Lucan. He just didn't
> want the NPC to be captured "so easily".

Eh. I'm willing to give my DM the benefit of doubt, especially seeing as
there's a big chunk of the adventure still left, judging by page volume,
so apparently the adventure itself is set up so that he isn't captured
so easily.


--
Jasin Zujovic
jzujovic@inet.hr
Anonymous
April 15, 2005 2:48:11 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

m.blundenATntlworld.com@address.invalid wrote:

> >> But I think it's telling that I'm having great fun despite having
> >> been screwed over by Lucan for the second time!
> >
> > It seems to me you were screwed over by the DM, not by Lucan. He
> > just didn't want the NPC to be captured "so easily".
>
> Nope. Those guys are scripted to turn up, plus Lucan, being a vampire,
> shouldn't have been subject to Suggestion in the first place.

I have Requiem, which let's me affect undead with bardic music.

I took it primarily so I can affect *myself* with inspire courage
(necropolitans, like all undead, are immune to morale effects), but it
came in handy here.


--
Jasin Zujovic
jzujovic@inet.hr
Anonymous
April 15, 2005 2:48:12 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Jasin Zujovic wrote:
> m.blundenATntlworld.com@address.invalid wrote:
>
>>>> But I think it's telling that I'm having great fun despite having
>>>> been screwed over by Lucan for the second time!
>>>
>>> It seems to me you were screwed over by the DM, not by Lucan. He
>>> just didn't want the NPC to be captured "so easily".
>>
>> Nope. Those guys are scripted to turn up, plus Lucan, being a
>> vampire, shouldn't have been subject to Suggestion in the first
>> place.
>
> I have Requiem, which let's me affect undead with bardic music.
>
> I took it primarily so I can affect *myself* with inspire courage
> (necropolitans, like all undead, are immune to morale effects), but it
> came in handy here.

Neat.

--
Mark.
Anonymous
April 15, 2005 2:12:47 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

On Thu, 14 Apr 2005 22:45:59 +0200, Jasin Zujovic <jzujovic@inet.hr>
carved upon a tablet of ether:

> > It seems to me you were screwed over by the DM, not by Lucan. He just didn't
> > want the NPC to be captured "so easily".
>
> Eh. I'm willing to give my DM the benefit of doubt, especially seeing as
> there's a big chunk of the adventure still left, judging by page volume,
> so apparently the adventure itself is set up so that he isn't captured
> so easily.

I submit that when you are assaulted by a bunch of people, running
rather than meekly staying surrendered to another bunch who may or may
not protect you, is the smart move. Essentially the 'intelligence'
busting in made your suggestion no longer 'reasonable', so it stopped
working.

Alternatively, if your suspicions are correct, the sword may have
simply broken it when it was used/activated.


--
Rupert Boleyn <rboleyn@paradise.net.nz>
"Just because the truth will set you free doesn't mean the truth itself
should be free."
!