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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Tomb of Horrors Part 1 and 2

Yes, it is much later then I intended to post this, but what can you do?  Easter weekend is busy for wage slaves at retail apparently.  Anyway, there is no part one because the first session happened before I started this blog.  I'll give a quick little recap of it before we begin.

Of course, the first session was filled with the always exciting part where we all meet for the first time!  It is always interesting for me to see the new characters that my friends make and what different sources they pull from.  For example, our rogue is an elf named Ophelia.  My friend decided to pull from Hamlet and plays her like the character from the play, which leads to some very amusing moments in the game.  Even myself isn't above pulling from other sources, namely, my Aasimar cleric is Landring Carter.  And he talks like Foghorn Leghorn.

So...picture your cleric casting spells and praying for healing like this:

It gets some good laughs.  I also took the leadership feat, so I have a minion as well.  Dantil Carter, a human divine bard who is his nephew.  We have a human monk named Turngald Lightfoot in the party as well...he deals out some pretty decent damage, though he tries to tank a bit too often.  We have a Wood Elf barbarian named Torak Ironwood.  Yes, there have been many jokes about his name.  And of course you have to have a magic user, so we have a human sorcerer named Sainrith.  He also has a minion named Tindell, a human cleric.
Rest after the break

So the way that our DM started it, we were on a boat heading to the tomb of horrors.  We were let off right in front of it and told to explore.  We found the first three doors, and managed to survive those by heading down the middle one.  Where we find this hallway:

Alright...not so bad so far.  Tindell and Sainrith have a sort of trap finding brigade.  Tindell can summon undead to just plod down the hallway till they discover something, and Sainrith can summon an army of invisible servants to just sort the same thing really.  So we inch down this hallway, Ophelia making search checks for traps every twenty feet or so.  We found a lot of pit traps mostly.  We explore up to the doorway, then have the summoned undead open the door.  Which triggers the pit trap and he falls and gets impaled on spikes.  Which doesn't really matter know...undead.

We also at some point found this message:
Go back to the tormentor or through the arch, 
and the second great hall you’ll discover. 
Shun green if you can, but night’s good color 
is for those of great valor.
If  shades of red stand for blood the wise 
will not need sacrifice aught but a loop of 
magical metal—you’re well along your march. 
Two pits along the way will be found to lead 
to a fortuitous fall,  so check the wall. 
These keys and those are most important of all, 
and beware of trembling hands and what will maul. 
If you find the false you find the true
and into the columned hall you’ll come, 
and there the throne that’s key and keyed. 
The iron men of visage grim do more than 
meets the viewer’s eye. 
You’ve left and left and found my Tomb 
and now your soul will die.

Well, at this point, we decide to investigate that box protrusion a little more closely.

 Well, the rogue of course is very careful and finds the first obvious trap.  Inside, however, is a lever.  Number one rule in any dungeon...not just Tomb of Horrors...NEVER touch switches.  So we have an invisible servant do it for us while we stand back about twenty or so feet.  And again, another summoned minion falls into another pit trap.

Okay, we think to ourselves...enough of this.  The hallway goes further down and we haven't explored that yet.  So we head down the rest of the hallway.  And at the end on the right hand side is this little set-up:

Well, being intrepid explorers and adventurers, we are by no means willing to act like intelligent people.  So we set about investigating this little area as well.  First, the giant face statue:

Right...nothing can be wrong or horrible with this guy, right?  Well, one of the invisible servants sticks an everburning torch into the opening to try and see further into the mouth.  And, as anyone who has run this before will know, there was nothing left of the tip of the torch when they pulled it back out.  Okay, enough of this giant mouth thing...there is still the archway, right?

Okay, we can handle an archway...filled with swirling mists.  Not so bad, right?  Of course not.  We send an invisible servant in first.  Now I would like to pause right here to tell you that by this point, we were naming the invisible servants really stupid names like Bob or Will...then we started getting goofy and switched to Bill and Ted, or other random names.  Nothing really important there, we just thought it was funny to be sending Bob the Invisible Servant into certain death.

We attempted a lot with this archway, and we still aren't really sure what it does or what to do with it.  There are the three glowing gems on it...but not much else.  We decided in the end to leave the end of the hallway alone and proceed through the door.

However, my bard took the spell "Detect Secret Doors".   I had been thinking about that clue at the beginning, "Two pits along the way will lead to a fortuitous fall".  And you fall into a pit trap, so I figured, why not search the pit traps for secret doors.  And we did find that was only one way.  As luck would have it though, our Sainrith had Knock memorized so we were able to open it.  Ophelia, Sainrith and his horde of invisible minions (though slightly smaller now having lost more then a few to traps by this point) headed through this tiny tunnel into another room.

This room, to be precise:

Alright...treasure!  Well, Ophelia does her usual trip around the room, looking for traps and the like.  She does discover a secret door leading into this room, but decides to go for the chests first.  They hide down in the hole and send out invisible minions!  Minion opens the chest on the left.

Snakes...why did it have to be snakes?

Snakes!  Not treasure but a whole bunch of vipers.  So they run.  There is a brief fight where we kill all the snakes and they go back, not to be deterred by a bunch of tiny vipers.  So...this time, we go for the box on the right.

Hey!  Still not treasure!  Okay...well, they take a look at it and retreat, pulling the plug back into place so that this thing doesn't follow them down the tunnel.  And they call me in, resident cleric.  This thing looks undead, so should be a snap, right?  Of course!

I crawl down the tunnel, pop open the plug to stand up...and take a whole bunch of readied attacks to the face.  Painful...painful readied attacks to the face.  Well, alright, that was to be expected.  So here comes the turning! 

I call, I say, I call upon the power of Pelor, son!

And nothing.  Monster does not get turned.  I rolled fairly well too, so...ouch.  And he tears into me again.  Okay, time for a, I say, time for a tactical retreat, boys.  We get out and heal up.  That was pretty much the end of session one.

Now, I know that this is already pretty huge, and I would separate session 2 into a different blog but for one thing.  We only did one room and one fight in session two.  So I figured I would just include it here.

We went back to the doorway with the open pit trap in front of it.  Ophelia re-armed the trap, then disabled the trap so we wouldn't have to jump over any pits.  We opened the next door to this:

Surprise!  Now you will be killed in a most gruesome way!
This thing was ridiculous.  After the fight, our DM told us some of the stats to this creature and I hell with four-armed gargoyles.  Lots of hit points, lots of damage (two rend attacks?  WTF?), and DR 10/-.  Okay, fine...we can handle this, right guys?  We are high level adventurers!

When I was listing out player characters, I left one out.  One of my friends joined the game late and this room was where he joined us.  Nord Selker, a Illumian (from the Races of Destiny book) Duskblade.  The reason I mention this now is because he was the shortest lived character we've ever had.  Ever seen the movie Gamers 2: Dorkness Rising?  Remember the bard?

Yeah...that's about what happened.  He jumped in...did a lot of damage to the gargoyle (so he wasn't useless persay) then died within like two or three rounds of combat.  We were given some scrolls and other things to help, so I was able to raise him from the dead, but still...our first fight and we had to use it already.

Anyway, we did manage to defeat it but in a rather unusual manner.  Tindrell, the cleric minion, summoned another undead.  This time an Allip.  He ordered it not to babble and instead just had it drain wisdom from the gargoyle until it just went catatonic from the wisdom drain.  Once it dropped, they were able to simply coup-de-grace it and the fight was over...thankfully.  The monk (using his unfortunate tendency to tank) was down, and Nord was dead.  Luckily we were able to bring them back up and alive again.

We searched for treasure and found a gem studded collar on the gargoyle...which we of course took.  I cast detect magic and found a small compartment with a magic piece of parchment inside.  I cast read magic and was able to read another clue from the founder of the Tomb:

"Look low and high for gold, to hear a tale untold.  The archway at the end, and on your way you'll wend."

So there you have it...our first two sessions in the Tomb of Horrors.  Come back next week for more!

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