member, 1 post
Mon 9 Jul 2018
at 22:16
Stories; Your best or your worst.

Hi there, I recently joined this site and while waiting for a game I was thinking, Why not tell a story? Or hear a good story. So tell a story from your Roleplaying times, ether it is with friends in your house or online.

I'm not harbouring good stories, so I'll let one of you begin.
 member, 761 posts
 You can call me V, just V
 Life; a journey made once
Tue 10 Jul 2018
at 02:15
Stories; Your best or your worst.
I love telling game stories! I find too few will indulge me with the practice. I have so many, quite too many I often think when I get going. I think I'll talk about a story that has both player and character relevance, not that anyone here would know either. I'll do my best to inform you of the relevant details.

So, a little history. This was a group that played frequently enough that we were completing (LG) Living Greyhawk modules (4-hour session-length mini adventures) to get ready for conventions and LGS (Local Gaming Store) events. LG is a D&D 3.5 game "League" in which you documented progress and had web-based documentation certified by the parent company of D&D. So it was the gold standard of "official" D&D 3.5 when it came to having a character you could take ANYWHERE in the RL world and sit down with your most recent stats and be guarneteed to be compatible with the new players in an LG event, big or small.

The story begins with Arne, Greg, Andrew (the GM), myself V, Gary and Shawn. I was playing a gay male elven wizard who has the strength of a tiny fairy, though was a about four and half feet tall. He was tough, he'd have to be for this story I'll telling. Mostly he was otherise quite average. His intelligence though, not his common sense or intuition, but his raw cunning I.Q. and knowledge was almost unparalleled. People often saw Alautia the Pastel as this ineffectual character, but suffice to say, what he did, he was one of the best. Everything else though...he was quite ineffectual.

Arne is player that no one liked. I'm not sure, in hindsight, why people let him play with us. I never disliked him, but he was prone to cheating in homegames, was crass, had plumber-crack, and liked to snark on overtime. He was also the second oldest, several years older than me. Basically unpopular, but competent enough. Basically he liked no one and no one liked him. He was there because there were worse players, and honestly, I for one didn't dislike him. He was annoying sometimes, but he didn't talk smask about me nor I him, sometimes his characters were, well almost ALWAYS his characters were self-serving. This is relevant.

Arne was playing a druid to get a "free" horse, that while not the optimal choice, but one he was proud of. His character, whom I sadly forget the name of, but whom I know had a companion (like his horse or something) named Vladmir. So since the horse is tangential, we'll call Arne's character Vladmir. So Vladmir was quite strong, he has spells to increase his damage, and spells to increase his armor. So he was a druid wildman that played like a warrior. No woo-woo, just butt kicking, and he was...pretty good, even if not awesome.

Shawn was playing a dwarf paladin with super high toughness, and decent strength, but no charisma. His character was frankly ALSO built like fighter with little to no oomph for his paladin abilities. Finally Gary was Tristin the elven Ranger.

Tristin was my Alautia's closest friend...and they weren't friends...;s Tristin was an archer and Gary loved the fact I could summon tons of flying and swimming creatures to play interference. Gary and I were tight, not best buds, but we were in good. We enjoyed giving high fives and cheering each other on.

Alautia was quite annoying, but not to the players, who thought was a stitch.  It was narratively and purposely hammed up that Alautia was this eye-rollingly flamboyant just Paris Hilton type gay mage. Everything he did was utterly melodramatic, when he was in the sewers, he would wail and cry about his robes were dirty...the WHOLE stretch. If the other players minded, they were laughing at it and when asked lied that thought it was fine.

So let's jump the scene and get past the history. This was group with a good amoutn of history, so I felt it worthwhile.

The group is on a boat, we have to be on boat to cross this river. The ferry in the adventure is out, and we're on something like the bayou with tons of plant life growing on the surface. It looks like solid ground, almost everywhere, but it's as fragile as lily pads, you'll fall right through.

The dwarves are rowing, Greg has his dwarf cleric and shawn his dwarf paladin. They're complaining about the pansy elves and the wacky human doing no work. Being the grumby, loving to grumble dwarves. So Valdmir joined in to show the dwarvesHE wasn't pansy elf. Tristin rolled his eyes and commented that is something came along, the axes would do no good, and his bow took two hands. WE made some rolls to see things, and Tristin with the best eyes saw the goal we were looking for. I actually forget what; I think a water god's shrine.

So the dwarves double-time it, and then...a watery dead hand reaches up over the boat and hits the dwarf cleric. Greg's dwarf beats it with the oar and then then draws his axe, and then there's ten, and then twenty-twenty!--ghastly hands surrounding the boat, and this is bad! We are literally the land equivalent of fish in barrel. We are landlubbers on a cork and these ghasts want us to join them in undeath.

One after the other, the strong dwarves go to battle, and start hacking these ghasts to pieces. Vladmir is slow, he rolled like crap to get his turn to declare his action. I got a decent but low turn. Tristin shoots a few, and gets hit, he has to make fortitude save, something to do with his toughness being able to prevail. The ghasts then grab Alautia and pull him overboard. Now, I make my save, I fail. What happens? OH! I paralyzed. So quite awhile. Now I'm underwater. I going to drown, one of the worst ways to die!

So I'm out of the combat Gary is worried. His bow is mostly great for range, in this case, he opts to use his longsword, but this is not his forte. The dwarves are basically our only hope. WE discount Vladmir, he'll only save himself.

The ghasts go for the kill, they attack me, like limp fish on dinner plate, tearing at me, I'm about to lose consciousness and I'm going to die. I announce to the players, they need to run. I screwed, but that's how the dice fall. Greg's like "uh-uh. Shawn and I can do this". Greg's dwarf jumps ion the water and started to swim, but he's slow, slow as fruit.

Finally the ignored Vladmir goes. He jumps in the water. WTF? Instead of attacking though, he makes bee-line fo Alautia. "Oh, you're gonna finish Alautia off!" Gray remarks, even though there's no PvP. Arne just shrugs, "why not?"

Vladmir incurs one attack, two attacks, THREEE attacks just by provoking the ghasts by his direct movement, each of the ghasts gets a free out of trun attack, and Vladmir is still able to move, though he's hurt about a quarter.

NExt round. Swim and attack for Greg's dwarf. He's not going to let Vladmir screw this up, but Greg's dwarf is barely halfway at this point, and Greg's dwarfcasts a sepll to make sure he's immune to the ghasts paralysis, he;s having none of that stuff!"

The Ghasts turn on Valdmir, content that one or two can kill Alautia. They tear at Vkladmir, but Vladmir refuses to go down, he's still in control of his body. Two ghast cackle and gear me a new wizard hole. I'm nearly dead. I'm basically gone. TRistin groans and gets his bow, he fires two arrows onto a ghast near Greg's dwarf. FINALLY! one,just ONE ghast dead. Jeez!

Alautia has to save to live. I fall closer to death. Anothewr ghast attack Vladmir, this time misses. Vladmir, what the hecll is he doing. He grapples me. The gM informs him there's no PvP. Us players just laugh, Alautia basically dead anyway. Arne says he's dragging me away, and asks if HE or Alautia provokes the ghasts free attacks if he does that...well, Vladmir would. So Arne nods, "that's what I'm doing"  And he easily grapples me and then because Vladmir is high enough level, he is abl;e to drag me back to the boat. Yay! I'm not dead...yet.

Back to the dwarves. They kill three. Greg rolls so well he is able to get three attacks and kill two. Shawn kills one. The ghasts split, the go after the dwarves but also Vladmir. Tristin is untouched. Vladmir is basically, now on the boat, able to resist the couple on him, no problem. It's time to kick ass, Vladmir, go wildman! No. Tristin shoots and wounds one, he shots agin and again just can't do much damage, screw it, he has one more shot, and thre is goes. Finally! We've half the ghast pack. Vladmir reaches into his backpack and gets potion. A potion his character paid for, and pours it down Alautia's throat. The GM informs Arne that Valdmir will take two more free hits. Arne waves it off, "That's fine. I don't care" The ghasts hit, Vladmir is still up, still able to move, but barely hanging on. Alautia is awake. Vladmir is yelling for me to freaking fly away! I intend to.

The dwarves are now too far out, swim swim they go, and that's it. The ghasts, made for swimming mod Vladmir. The ghasts drop Valdmir, he's dying. "Nope!" says Arne. "I have this favor from another mod! When I would be dying I heal 10 HP" Wow! That's a major boon. Good going Vladmir! But now that boon is gone, gone for good. It's one shot. TRistin's luck is just failing, one bad roll after another. Vladmir, he casts battle spell, and finally start kicking ass. He kills one of the four left. He's bascially taking the full brunt, for nearly the entire battle,m just soaking damage like a champ and probably going to drop.

FIANLLY! YAY! It's Alautia's turn. I screw flying, I'm sorry Arne, but I'm going to gives you flanking adn we're going to finish this. I summon three hippogriffs, they EACH attack. One, TWO hits. Another Ghast down. Two left. The dwarves swim. They're ALMOST there. Boats suck when ghasts are pushing it father and farther, NO ONE has been able to keep it form drifing. This was an oversight.... Tristin decided to stop the boat, and shoots two arrows at the remaining ghoul. Again...poor Gary...just crap damage. That ghast has got to be hurting though. The Ghasts attack me, oh crap! But wait! Isince I FINALLY got a turn, I can intrerrupt that! I do, I cast a greter mirror image. Suck on that. IT has 1 in 7 chance of hitting the REAL Alautia (think Loki from the first Thor movies on the bridge, false images that look like me, and ALL copying my movement is some mirror direction) The Ghast misses. The next Ghast hits Vladmit, Vladmir is almost down again! He's clinging to life. Valdmir wrecks! just wrecks the fully healthy ghast. Mas damage and he had added an addiition die to his damage. So that ghast is just five ways head; crushed skull, decpitated, ribs crushed, and everything below the waist....gone. Then I get to go. The Hippogriffs easily tear the klast ghast apart. "I could have done that" said Tristin. And we laugh.

Is that it?! "We'll see" says the GM. We recap what happened, and yes, for now that's it. I then ask Arne "Why the hell did you save me? You spent three rounds just to save me" and he shrugged "You would have done the same for me", I wouldn't have...I'm sorry... Obviously that changed, and I got to retrun the favor later, but it really struck me at heroic. These are just "I'll make new character" no, this is RL hours and days and weeks down the drain if you die, and you can;'t be recovered. In that water, there was a good chance the body would sink too far to get to. He saved mys character thus in that moment I had my second to last brush with death, and was able get Alautia high enough level JUST in time to retire him when the LG league was ending.

Alautia saving Vladmir is another story, but it's not that heroic, it's also not that cool. So I'll put it simply. We were on an ice bridge, and Vladmir ran, knwoing the Ice balance check needed would be easy...well it wasn't...and enemy mage cast Grease on it JSUT when anyone ran down it, and the bridge was super deadly hgiehgr. tso slide, slide slide Valdmir went, and was too far for anyone to reach. He would be recoverable, eventually, just down to the icy revine, but he would definitely be dead. So I just summoned Hippgriffs at my mas range and had them charge Vladmir top grapple him. EAsy-peasy done and done. Very little risk on Alautia's part. Arne was very glad though. Cursing the damn Grease spell. "I could have made the balance if not for the Grease!" Yeah, I know *chuckle* Vladmir and TRistin and even Alautia got to kick ass that battle. Much different. Long range, TRistin just wrecked the enemy caster. "OH? You want to cast bad-ass mage dude? Okay, I'll wait...just until you're about to finish the spell, ands then shot you to screw up your incantation. Oh? My range. *laughter* I have about 300 ft with a -3, so yeah, don't you even worry about that range. I'm good. And you're dead...punk."

It just stuck with me, all those LG stories. And i know my telling was crude and not fully bale to capture the tale. It was special to me. That Arne, this guy that acted like a jerk, would put his time investment and character growth into my charcter's growth.

Later, much later, it was snowing and I really wanted to go to con. It was moved locations and I KNEW my car couldn;t handle to trip. I was so bummed, I had driven to the LGS, and was going to have to go home. Arne was there and asked if he could giveme a ride. "YES!" well...hmmm...was that going to be alright? And yeah, he drove about 20 miles to the event and took me back. I tanked him and he just brushed it off.

Another time he invited me to Burger King. Yeah, not much but it meant something to me. And I was broke. Basically in abad point in my life, I had roof over my head but living off $80 a yearand scraps of food from a bad family. So when he asked "What do you want?" I said "Ah, no, I don't have any money" "Whateverm what do you want?" "Arne...I'n broke" "pffft. I'll get you something"

These were the only slight breaks in this mask of the ice king. Arne was so uncharacterically snarky and antagonistic. Those WERE the only times he was truly nice. His characters would steal form others. He would fudge rolls. Put salt in thew ounds of other's misfortune. Arne was, to be fair, a jerk...but not to me. Sure our character in ghome game had to work it out, but Arne never gave ME, V, trouble. And I didn't him. Others would ridicule him. I sometimes wonder if those people didn;t sttart the trend, because he had plumber crack, or made the wrong joke and they jumped on him, and he only returned the treatment by just not trying if they weren;t going to either. Arne disappeared one day, he was supposed to make it to my game, and never did. I shrugged it off, but no one knows what happened to him. I've seen Greg since and he had no idea, he just shrugged it off as he didn't like Arne.

And that's my story. Mostly out of game, but somewhat a character story. I hope it's readable. I DO know it's quite long. I like long posts though, I;ve been broken SO far from one-liners. xD
 member, 7028 posts
 Gaming for over 30
 years, and counting!
Tue 10 Jul 2018
at 04:13
Stories; Your best or your worst.
I've told this one before, so if you've read it, sorry for the repeat, but it's one of my favorite gaming stories, as it highlights some of the RL benefits that can be gained from Role-Playing...

Star Wars game.  We had a really big group...about twelve of the GM basically broke up into two teams. If the other team was playing that night, you were welcome to show up...but odds were good you wouldn't be doing anything.  So we had a few extra people around that night...

This ended up being one of the rare nights where the GM found a good, dramatic way to work the extra people into the storyline.  We're all on the same group had called the other one in for some reinforcement, but they were trying to bag an Imperial agent.  Turns out, this agent was an Emperor's Hand...and she managed to abduct our aspiring Jedi.

Now, Gen (the Jedi wannabe) had slipped up a few time before, so BOTH groups had some idea of what she could be like if she went Darkside on us...and there were individuals in both groups who'd vowed that if they ever thought she was going over, they'd just cap her to save the galaxy from Vader getting an enthusiastic apprentice (because, even without going to the Dark Side, she liked a lot of things about the Empire and we were constantly having to remind her that, along with the peace and order they provided, there was an awful lot of oppression and suffering and she shouldn't take Imperial crews as representative of what the Empire provided for everyone...if she wasn't trying to be a 'good guy', she'd have been an unholy terror, even without extensive Force powers.) One of those individuals was Levi's bounty hunter.

Now...Levi was the GM's middle son.  He was, at the time, maybe fourteen...and he over-thought EVERYTHING.  Analysis paralysis, in the game, in school, in his social life (such as it was). But he's got a mission, now...get Gen back from the Emperor's Hand...or else terminate Gen, before she can be turned.  He checks in with the rest of us...everyone is currently engaged in can't-leave-now activities (most of us were tangling with Imperial troops or somewhere else in an attempt to cut of escape routes for the Hand...)  He's on his own.  He tracks the Hand back to her ship...she's confident that she's managed to lose all pursuit, so she hasn't done a great job of securing it...and he rolls phenomenally well to bypass what security she did have activated.  Gets on board, finds Gen sedated on a medical table with some kind of implant that we later discovered was suppressing her consciousness enough to prevent her from doing much with The Force.  At the time, though, he didn't know what it was, and he didn't want to take the time to try and remove it with a live Hand at large on the ship.

So, he leaves Gen, and proceeds into the ship.  He's decided he's either going to take out the Hand, or disable the ship...or destroy it...the rest of us have been alerted, and the ones who aren't in a firefight are on our way back, but there's no way we're getting there anytime soon.  He finds the cockpit...engines are on standby, ready to launch, but nobody's there...and his security roll is good enough to realize he can't shut down without sounding the alarm, but not good enough to bypass it.  He moves on...finds the Hand's quarters.  Just as he opens the main hatch, she steps out of the fresher.  She sees him...and starts to move.

"You've got time to take ONE action," his dad (the GM) informs him...and Levi goes into self-debate mode, listing actions he can take and verbally weighing pros and cons.  Steve (his dad) lets this go on for a little bit, before saying, "Levi, if you don't decide on something, she's going to get to you..."  Levi gets a little more nervous, kind of'd be bad enough if it was just him, but Gen's welfare, and possibly her life, are also in his hands, and he REALLY doesn't want to screw this up...

After Steve gave him one more warning, I finally said, "Do SOMETHING.  Wrong or right, at least take an action!"

So, Levi fired his grenade launcher, point-blank, into the deck between him and the Emperor's Hand.  He figured it was his best chance of taking her out, or at least wounding her badly enough that he'd actually stand a chance against her in combat...he rolls to resist the damage...and makes his roll EASILY, even before the armor bonus was added in.  Walks away without out a scratch.

The Hand totally blew her roll.  It was a catastrophe for her BEFORE the Wild Die penalty was calculated.  She basically caught almost every bit of shrapnel from the grenade, and was down and dying.  Levi goes back to the cockpit, sets the self-destruct, retrieves Gen (and her implant...our team knows people who can fix stuff like that) and is walking away when the Hand's ship goes up, with her still on board (at least, as far as we know...she never appeared again, so...) when the first speeder arrives with our team's reinforcements.

And it was a paradigm shift in Levi's gaming.  I don't know enough about the rest of his life outside of that to say it changed everything for him...but he lost his problems with making a decision and running with it.  He's gone to China on his own, went back east to attend NYU, gotten married, and has a kid on the way...which is pretty good for a kid who had to analyze whether he wanted pepperoni or sausage pizza, and would take ten minutes to come to a decision.
 member, 762 posts
 You can call me V, just V
 Life; a journey made once
Tue 10 Jul 2018
at 10:23
Stories; Your best or your worst.
In reply to facemaker329 (msg # 3):

Holy Spaceballs! I HAVEN'T seen that one, actually! That's AWESOME! Good for Levi. This may be viewed badly, but sadly I actually like this movie, cheesy as it is, and so insert your own movie and know I probably like Hard Target as much as you like some of your favorites. That scene reminds me of Jean-Claude Vandamme's sailor in Target, at the very end, whhen he breaks the board in the fiery warehouse and leaves the main huntsmaster for dead.

I can just see the very "Bad Blood" explosion of the ship and Levi's character walking away with only sweat grease and the blood of the Hand. All so badass!

That's good though, I'm glad it had an impact on him. It feels good to be pressed, and know the right choice is what it takes, but you have to ACT, and you make that right choice. Good for him! Confidence breeds success, and risk brings reward.

MY best friend's ex-husband was like that; but sadly he slipped in the later years; I think largely from my friend, Anne, leaving him. For awhile though, he was touched by a Game I GMed. It was D&D 3.5 when the system had just had Complete Adventurer out, so it felt like the full complete set was out; at least for the core classes archytpes; cleric, fighter, rogue, and wizard. So I GMed a game from 1st to 20-something. It had split XP, but certain players died mor eof less, and some did side missions.

Well Matt, this guy, was playing a Favored Soul of Heironeous, but was Lawful NEutral. Well, the characters had to find new 'gods' called rulers. Essentially it was a world where the world "god" was taboo and worse than saying Voldemort, and there was only "The One" and no one dared say what he was (a god, THE god [well sort of]).

So Matt had Randal, his character, convert (by necessity) to Morad, the Judge and NOT the executioner. He was the ONLY ruler that gave judgement. Not even the good or evil ruler had hand in that, Morad alone followed the rules set by the very plane of judgement, elemental and sovereign.

The other characters, Bill's Zal being most pivotal, were largely on escapades of their own, constantly Anne asking for mini-sessions on different day, and Bill asking me to stay late (after group game at his parents' house).

Zal started as a paladin of St. Cuthber. Converted to the ruler Corid, god of emotion, knowledge, and among other things; vengeance. Zal knew a lot, he became the single most feared Pc when it came to raw combat. Zal was badass, but even then villains were in places he could not be.

So Zal hunted, day and night, and was consumed by righting every wrong. When he ran out of rights, he started to wrong those that were wrong. Consumed by the fact his charge, a young Monk named Kara, was raped and made to bear the child a chosen messiah and martyr that would die at Human years 3 and but maturity age 17, Zal found Leonard, openly, and admitted Leonard was Kara's rapist. Zal first converted to evil. Leonard was a creepy looking man, his grin just showed he was evil. Look up Crucin Bascar here  ( if the link is cut off and just search for Crucin Bascar) This is what Leonard looked like, and he looked more like the Cheshire Cat when Zal converted to evil, and Zall learned more of the knowledge through the new ruler, the Void Ruler Kitae' from the Pagan and dark Void world.

Zal never raped, and kept his consultation with Leonard secret. He became more and more dark, and cruel, but never shed his facade of the justice bringer, but there were hints. Zal had the ability to misdirect his alignment to the Lawful Good charge he had saved, but whose rapist schemer (not actual rapist but schemer) was teahcing him. So the group would checkm and WZal was always Lawful the divination.

Finally Leonard said there was one more lesson, but he wanted something special for the final Student to master gift. He sent Zal to slaughter the Mystic Empire, the mage rulers of the eastern continent, and Zal obliged. He when through the stretts, carrying his shadow magic symbol, his heretical symbol openly, and walked up the gates and began to climb the wall. The mageknight fired on him, and only hit hardened iron. He began to use the mageknights as fodder to bait the Mystic Seven to finally rear their heads. He just walked along the wall kill two with each round, and he was so empowered by just how much investment he put into his character, his tactical choice of artifacts (each PC had two) that there was no need for roll. If he rolled a 1, he simply failed to critically hit, but still hit normall. If he didn;t roll a natural 1, he critically hit his enemy.

Finally the Mystics showed up, and he convinced them another evil had done this teleported away, and persuaded them by sheer knowledge only Corid's Hand could know, to each give their ear and eye. Afterall, they had magic to restore it, it was about saving the world "aren't you supposed to support us, as we save the world. Wopuld you not give an eye for eye, and ear for an ear; after we saw to your dangers, and heard your plights?" and the Mystics, haltingly agreed. They mere squeemish, but Zal was a their eyes.

Zal returned to Leonard and laid the organs on the table, cleaned like trophies. Leonard laughed, and grinned like the diaturbed mascot. Zal asked the final lesson. "You have already learned it. To open your mind and heart to the darkness, and in it, only then shall you find true Vengeance, only then will you think of doing whatI have. If you have killed the Mystics, you must already know this"

Zal, smirked on his one side and sneered on the other. No, he hadn't, not yet. LEonard began to rave "Now that you are corrupted, you understand you are my greatest glee. You fool! Did you not know, you will never save your precious Kara! You-" Zal pulled his sword "I never said I would let you live, Leonard" "And how do you intend to kill me." "By your own bane...Leonard" LEonard grinned and Zal showed the bane of Leonard, a special exception Zal knew about that would essentially bind Leonard to the prison plane of the Executioner and Warden ruler. Then Zal said "Now don't lose your smile, Leonard" and just cut off Leonard's head. And the black knaves head was still smiling.

But Zal wasn't done. He knew what he had to do, and he was, in truth corrupted. He diod infact follow Kitae. But news ahd Spread, and we come full circle to Matt and Randal. Which I bet you were wondering about. Matt's Randal was barely epiuc, saying that he wasn't off on midnight scurries with Mystics, or prusuing godhood, now, he was tending to the people. Doing the everyday tasks SOMEONE should do, guarding the keep, getting supplies, putting leaderhship the kingdom the other two PCs forgot thjey had followers in that looked to Them.

So when Randal contacted the Mystics, he heard of of Zal's scapegoat. Rnadlas checked, and sure enough, no...that man was dead. Either that was not Zal, or Zal was no longer himself. Randal scryed on Zal, and found out enough. Then Randal traveled to the Mystic District most likely to be attacked, Chronos, the shady timelord, Zal had already had beef with. And Randal began to plan. Matt went all out, and wrote up all these plans and procedures. IT was quite elegant. Matt even missed the game week and and said "No, no, Bill and Anne like to go on their little mini-missions, I'll wait. I'm stay home and plan" and they did. Anne did her thing and Bill his. Then when we were getting close to midnight my phone rang and it was Matt. He asked "If Zal going to the Mystic District soon" and told him not wiothout MAtt there. So he asked if he could come over, and we agreed.

So then and there Matt and Bill had this epic showdown. Vengeance against Justice. There was little rolling that took place. It would be tedious and not very interesting to explain, but by "bidding" essentially using their artifacts in creative ways and Randal having an arsenal of planned defenses, and the foresight of everything Zal could do. Randal called on all these favors, and all these little bits of influence, and managed to get his epic spell, the binding and bashing spell off. He needed a high roll, not natural 20, but I think 15+, and he did that twice.

'And Zal was banished, forever, to the Void System. Then he bound the portal to the Void plane so that no summoning or calling Zal coudld be made. Because it was tied to a single, one single creature, Zal it increased the difficulty to ovecome. Then he used all his spellpower allowed by the roll to cover from shore to shore, about the distance of southwestern to southeastern Africa (which is what the continent vaugue resemlbed: Africa) and Zal could never enter there, even if somehow someone called him. Well, it would take difficult no ruler could even make, like a DC 150+ something (he had the helped of the Mystics to boost it, so yeah....;s Zal was gone).

Afterward Matt said to Anne (while they were married) "If Randal can go from 1st toi epic, then I can get a job. I showed that this made up person can do a world of good. If Randal can do that, I can do things I also put my mind to" and he did, for a few years.

It was bittersweet, like I said. Anne had to leave Matt, not out of spite but marital disfucntion. They would ahve made great friends, but they only got married so Anne's work could give him healthcare.

I think after that was too proud admit how hurt he was. The group got together for months afterward. Well, when Anne was moving in with me, out of financial need. IT really just...sort of made things awkward. Anne and I are thick as thieves, but we're friends, and there's almost no romance, just respect and love for each other's company. The;s different. But I don;t blame Matt. The most likely case was that I stole her. Far from the truth, I councilled Anne and was her devil's advocate.

Matt did well for awhile though, I'm glad I left an impression even if it didn't last for long. I still have a letter his character wrote tucked in safe place for that saga, the saga that spanned ages that...he will probably never see...but it meant a lot to me, that he would spend all that time in a world I made and he inhabited and made rich. He also made an audio cut scene for Randal's spell of binding. He also gave me copy, on a CD (That I should REALLY back up! Og god! I'll do that tonight!). It used in games I GM for Anne adn others who know alot about Matt and became our group since. Randal will always be the Morad of the Bright System, and it really makes me happy he gave me that gift. That letter, and that song, and that time, and I gave him a few years of goodness and confidence. I think I got the better deal...I really wish I could repay him. *shrug* Alas, some scars never heal. Matt I'll miss, but I'll always have those mementos of Randal...
Tyr Hawk
 member, 351 posts
 You know that one guy?
 Yeah, that's me.
Thu 12 Jul 2018
at 17:59
Stories; Your best or your worst.
My first experience GMing was one that's difficult to forget (despite my efforts). The group was generally only halfway okay at roleplaying, immature, broke character a lot, metagamed, didn't care about whether they lived or died because they could just roll a new character whenever. It made it hard to tell a meaningful story, and what was worse was that I was inheriting the game from a GM who wanted to become a player, so the players had already been given a few things that would make my life difficult. But I was young, stubborn, and a writer so I was going to give them what they claimed they wanted, which was a campaign to remember. The inevitable failure of that goal was multi-faceted, as one might imagine, but there were, despite the group, a few choice moments which I will always remember.

This is one of those moments.
From the storied vaults of the Game Master Association of Tyr, the humble Only Slightly Exaggerated Tales brings you Clever Horse (A D&D 4e Short Story).

Dramatis Personae:
Fighter - Dragonborn. Arrogant. Selfish. Possibly evil-aligned.
Assassin - Human. Arrogant. Greedy. Definitely neutral-aligned.
Wizard - Human. Arrogant. Cheap. Suffers from "dumb player in a smart character" syndrome.
Thief - Half-elf. Reserved. Quiet. Does whatever the Wizard asks her to.
Paladin - Human. Reserved. Quiet. Suffers from "zero confidence player in a high confidence character" syndrome.
Cleric - Dwarf. Talkative. Very talkative. Please, just shut up already.
Invoker - Human. Thoughtful. Dedicated. Only person at the table who stayed in character > 50% of the time.
Horse - Horse. Clever.

Around the time that our Assassin and Fighter woke up, the main party was elsewhere, exploring whether or not spitting on the ground was allowed within the city or not. They were obviously in a dungeon, because when you wake up chained to a cold stone altar in a stonework room lit by torches, where else would you be, exactly? The hooded figures were just walking out of the room, and there was no telling just how long it would be until they came back, so the Assassin came up with a plan. The plan was simple: he had a ring of teleportation, and he still had it when he woke up. He vanished out of the chains in an instant and began picking the locks on his Dragonborn friend.

Meanwhile, having determined that it was, in fact, possible to spit on the ground, the Wizard and crew were approaching the large temple in the middle of the elven city. Everything there had been beautiful, pristine, and of the highest quality, and the Temple was no exception. It was glorious in all the ways a temple should have been, and there were a few hundred people outside of it, kneeling and praying, even in the middle of the day. Although slightly "weirded out" by people being openly religious, the group pushed onwards and into the Temple, searching for signs of what was wrong, because no city should ever look that nice or be that clean.

Yes. That was the actual reason given for snooping around the main temple.

Back underground, the Assassin had only just barely freed the Fighter when the priests came back with their sacrificial daggers. Both sides caught with their pants down, the fight was both quick and sloppy. The Fighter tanked hits like a pro, and the Assassin mostly let him, because he didn't want to get hurt.

Without stopping to formulate a plan, they both looted the daggers and any gold before running out into the maze of dungeons. They took turn after turn at random, going with their gut in all cases rather than looking for clues as to which way would be best. By chance, they ended up in the Treasure Room, with gleaming piles of gold and jewels just ripe for the taking. Naturally, they were both going to load up on whatever they could carry, but the moment they started picking up gold there was a grating strains of metal against stone, and a rush of darkness.

Looking down the hallway they'd come from, there now stood a new source of light. A black horse burning with dark flames, nostrils flared with smoke, leaving ashen scorchmarks as it slowly walked towards the intruders. A Nightmare. Behind it, a barred gate of what looked to be steel, or maybe something more, with no locks to be seen. They're trapped, and they know it.

"Roll Initiative."

The Assassin gets the jump on the combat and, true to form, he teleports himself to the other side of the bars immediately. He's not sticking around for this fight, but he does do something mildly unexpected. "Here!" he says to the Fighter. "Take the ring and let's go!"

"Nah," the Fighter says. "I'm gonna tame it."

Now, I know what you're thinking right now. "He's going to tame it? So he's got like... multiple ranks in Animal Husbandry or something then?" No. He doesn't. He doesn't have a single point in anything that would remotely resemble a skill dedicated to taming animals, much less Nightmares. However, he does have a magical item, just like the Assassin. His is a collar that instantly tames any creature if you can get it around the beast's neck. So, all he has to do is successfully Grapple it, and the deed will be done.

He lunges at the flaming horse, missing his first grapple check by a narrow margin. The horse bites him. He ducks down, going for a rising pin. The horse stomps on him with its front hooves. He circles around and tries to leap onto its back. The horse kicks him out of the air and into the hallway. "Clever horse," the Fighter says, but he's going to go for it one more time. With everything he is, the Fighter rages forwards, bellowing a war cry as he tries to snap the collar around the horse's exposed throat. And he misses. And he gets bit again.

Low on HP now, the Fighter accepts that he's met his match. He takes the ring, teleports out, and they make their way back towards the surface with their stolen gold and only a little bit of hurt pride.

The crew above, while this battle ensued between horse and Fighter, interrogated the Head Priest. The Half-Elf got a sneer or two, but she didn't mind because she was used to being looked down on by Elves and Humans alike. The Paladin attempted to charm his way into the Priest's good graces, and fumbled. The Cleric attempted to use his wisdom and knowledge of the gods to help formulate the right questions, but he had no luck. The Wizard straight-up said "There's got to be something wrong here because it's too nice. So, just tell us what it is!" He was kind and patient with them, despite their blatant accusations, and told them he had somewhere else to be.

The party was dismayed, and decided they needed to go look for the Assassin and the Fighter anyways so they could leave the city.

As they're just about out the door, the Assassin and the Fighter managed to find their way out of the dungeon maze and, lo and behold, they're in the back room of the Temple with the High Priest and some of his hooded helpers. They have no idea the party is on the other side of the building, and they don't care either. They've got four opponents and not much to work with since the Fighter is low on HP; 7, to be exact.

"Roll Initiative."

This time the Assassin and the Fighter are on the slower end of the spectrum. Faster than the hoods, but not faster than the High Priest. He casts a spell, unleashing a screaming mass of tentacles beneath the Fighter which wrap around him and squeeze him for exactly 7 damage. He can't believe it. I can't believe it. No one can. With his last breath before unconciousness, he screams out.


The End.
 member, 25 posts
Thu 12 Jul 2018
at 20:32
Stories; Your best or your worst.
Now, this isn't a long story but it is by far one of my favorites ever. During early High school my friends and I were all boy scouts, and we used to go on these long rode trips. Naturally, we looked for things to do. Well, the scoutmasters had banned electronics on the trips so it had to be something we could do in a car. I was charged with coming up with what to do. I had no knowledge of DnD at the time but ended up making some board games that well, didn't have boards! They were tactical in nature and slowly became more "you play as a specific soldier" and less you're a "general". The games were such a success we started playing them on the campouts!

As time went on I learned and studied more about gaming and stumbled upon Savage Worlds, and DnD. And so begins our story...

We never had time to get together so we played over text message (yes, we sent each other txts, this let everyone respond whenever they could). This is important because when players are new to rpgs and think the faster they respond the faster their character act, well that's what happened. I had to tell everyone to stop responding because the whole party devolved into chaos. And here's why--

So we were playing a zombie apocalypse game, using Savage Worlds. We had the following players

Jake: The "intelligent guy always pointing out story inconsistencies and coming up with those annoying actions that disrupt the entire story" He naturally played a super intelligent character who was law abiding. This is important to remember.

Montana: The "I'm a jock but the GM is my best friend so I'll do the nerd thing because I like videogames and this is kinda cool"

David: The typical "mysterious badass rogue guy"

Turner: The "played Skyrim in my basement for 3 months then school started, so now I play in my basement after school" guy. Did his best to help the GM, and was my favorite player.

The game begins with the party waking up in a hospital  (yes, I was that GM), and they quickly had several questions like "what are the odds that 4 coma stricken people would all wake up at the same time?" But they worked with it and began to explore the hospital. They ran into zombies and dealt with them, then ran into too many to handle so they race down a stairwell while Jake uses his uber intelligence to create a magnetic bomb out of a hospital xray machine(no, it made no sense. But he made it make sense. And sides, the party was about to die so I rewarded the idea) and kill the zombies.

After they emerged from the hospital they got into an abandoned humvee and drove off, then realised humvees use a LOT of gas, and they ran out. They went to a nearby gas station and then things got interesting.

Jake) we can't take gas without leaving a form of payment.

Montana) dude, it's the fruiting apocalypse.

Jake) and? Do laws cease to exist when disasters occur?

David) *from the shadows, no idea who he was hiding from, maybe himself?* There is no law, we are the law.

Jake) No, when we men decide to become judge jury and executioner society is truly gone, for men become savages.

Turner) okay! Let's just leave some cash on the table! It's worthless to us anyways!

Jake) That is suitable.

Montana) this is stupid. *starts to fill tank*

Jake) *Scavenged for money to pay for the gas*

At this point two men are spotted by the party. One of them has a gas tank. They call out a friendly hello.

Montana) *casually grabs rifle and nails a headshot on one of the men* They were bandits, let's get the gas.

Turner) They were friendly!

David) *slits other man's throat as he cowers behind a car, hiding from the party*

Jake, at this point calmly announces) The two of you have committed murder, and will be held accountable in the court of law when we reach a civilised society.

Now Montana and David don't care, the world has ended, and now they have more gas then before. The game goes on, and quite some time later the party encounters a farm, with a small community on it. Everyone has forgotten the murdered NPCs. Everyone but Jake. While eating with the people at dinner Jake stands and makes an announcement "These two men are murderers, and nust face the court of law and punished accordingly,  I myself and Turner will be the witnesses.

Montana) *immediately draws pistol and shoots Jake

David) *starts throwing knives everywhere, kills several people eating dinner who are shocked and confused as to what's going on. Why did he do this? I'll never know.

Turner) Dives under table*

Jake) simultaneously draws pistol and shoots David, to save civilians*

Now everyone starts blowing my phone up with counter actions and everything. I demand they stop and resolve everything out as I was rolling the dice. This is the result-

David is instantly killed by Jake, who crit rolled despite having the lowest skill and damage possible in the game for shooting  (d4-2, he ended up rolling three natural 4s in a row, then critted damage)

Tuner successfully dives under the table and saves himself.

Jake is killed by Montana in the shootout that he has with Montana. His last dying words are "Law and Order shall prevail in the face of chaos!"

Montana, mortally wounded, then turns on Turner. Montana is a killing machine, while Turner tried to be balanced. Turner manages to survive a few rounds and falls unconscious after fleeing from the house.

Montana, feeling triumphant, say a he's won the game. I chuckle. He stood no chance. See, the farm was occupied by cannibals. They easily subdue Montana and eat him, as he's already so depleted.

Several hours later Turner wakes up, realised what happened, and states his character was forever changed by Jakes dying words and character, and proceeds to lure a herd of zombies to kill the cannibals, then goes off to establish the first society since the collapse of civilization, its motto? "Law and Order shall prevail in the face of chaos."

Of course, the next game was a fantasy one and everyone started in a prison cell, and they immediately murdered each other with a stick David was using to write out his escape plan in the dirt with.

So yea, it was fun. I'd seen Parties disagree on moral principles, but never seen a full fledged interparty murder fest. To this day we all make jokes about it, and what's interesting is today Montana and David are both military bound and strongly believe in law, whereas the rest of us went the opposite direction.
 member, 7030 posts
 Gaming for over 30
 years, and counting!
Fri 13 Jul 2018
at 06:39
Stories; Your best or your worst.
I know it's not a particularly popular system on RPOL, but I had several friends who ran long-term Palladium Fantasy RPG games...and more than a few interesting stories came out of those games...

One of my personal favorites, though, was one that left my GM absolutely gob-smacked.  I don't even remember the whole set-up for the event...but somehow, our party was trapped in another dimension by a deity, when another came to intercede.  He left a portal open for us to escape, and everyone did...

Except my Wolfen bard.  This was shaping up to be a battle of the gods, and he had a front-row seat!  NO WAY was he leaving this!!!  He was safe, because he carried a runesword (which is a whole other story in and of itself, but the Reader's Digest version is, our GM thought it would be hilarious to have us quest for a runesword...and, at the end of that quest, have the sword be size-appropriate for a gnome (a little larger than a pixie).  The rest of the party walked away in bard saw the potential for some great stories coming from carrying it around, so he put it on a leather strap and wore it as a pendant necklace...but because he claimed the weapon, he gained access to all its powers).

And, yeah...he survived the battle.  The game didn't continue much further after that...but he was making bank telling the story in taverns when we stopped playing.
 member, 967 posts
Fri 13 Jul 2018
at 15:34
Stories; Your best or your worst.
This story is from a table-top Palladium Fantasy RPG session, and a very cinematic one at that.  Let me set up the combatants first:

The Party:
Human Mind Mage (powerful psychic)
Elven Wizard
Elven Ranger (no Favored Enemy, more like special operations warriors) warriors)
Human Knight
Kobold Tumbler (me, PFRPG's kobolds are not tiny dragons, more like goblins with the work ethic, and the mining and the metalworking skills of dwarves)
Hatchling Ice Dragon (7 tons of fun)

The Enemy:
Troll Summoner (basically a 12' tall giant spellcaster)
5 Troll Mercenaries in full plate
15 Orc Mercenariies in full plate
30 Goblin Thieves and Assassins in leather
A couple of large logs for use as battering rams

The setting:
A small town backing up to a cliff, surrounded on three sides by a wooden  pallisade, that has been harangued and intimidated by this platoon of monsters.  You know, one of those places that is easily defendable but has no military force to speak of, only a small constabulary.  Just enough, when combined with the wall, to twart bandits, but not a determined military force.

The Story:
My character, who was in search of a troop of entertainers to join, had joined up with this group shortly after they banded together, and before. Coming across this dragon hatchling terrorizing a village (she wasn't trying to, but you know how people can be....).
They come to this town on our travels to rest up a few days and decide where we are going, when they are asked for our help.  Usual trope.  The enemy is on the way, blah, blah, blah.
So, here they are, the intrepid heroes, standing on the wall, the townsfolk evacuated to a safe location, when the trolls arrive.  The kobold comes down off the wall to stand outside before the enemy, taunting them.  We welcome you to the butt whooping you are about to receive!  He then moons them.
Remember the scene in Braveheart, where the Scots moon the British and bunch of them take arrows to the buttocks?  That almost happened when the orcs brought out their shortbows.  But, the kobold was able to dodge and make back up the wall without injury.
Anyway, the battle begins.  At one point, the kobold climbs up to the roof of a two story house and business, ties a rope to the chimney, and Tarzans his way into the chest of an orc, with a critical strike.  The orc comes back at him, and the kobold, at half the orc's height, does a roundhose-style kick that, because of another critical strike, breaks the orc's codpiece and drives the pieces into his crotch, killing him as ruled by the GM.
The dragin hatchling, after casting Armor of Ithan on herself, gets swarmed by goblins, so she decides to start rolling around on the ground.  The Mind Mage begins using telekinesis to pick up trolls and use them as armored, living battering rams (dubbed Brian's B17ches after the player)until they are nothing but goo contained in trashed plate armor, while the Knight faces them in hand-to-hand.
At one point, the Wizard cast blinding flash, trying to mess with the goblins and a group of orcs battling the Ranger.  Unfortunately, he also blinds tilhe dragon hatchling.
The kobold moves to assist the Knight against a particularly nasty troll.  We are doing very well, holding our own, and wearing him down, when the dragon smells him.  So this ice dragon hatchling, covered in goblin goo, decides ro jump into the air and bellyflop on the troll.  The kobold notices the enlarging shadow and backflips out of the way as he shouts a warning to the Knight.  Both Knight and troll look up just in time to see the belly of the seven ton baby drago blot out the sky, then she lands on them.
At this point, all the goblins are paste, all but five to eight of the orcs are left, there is one troll, and the troll Summoner left.  The Summoner, having watch as our heroes sytematically took his warriors apart, had started summoning a demon.
Now, a troll in Palladium averages about 12'tall and 800# of ugly viciousness in Palladium, and this last one had about 300# of appropriately-sized armor and weapons on him.  The demon was 25' to 30' tall and weighed at least a ton.  Suddenly, the troll found himself being slammed repeatedly into this demon, which was driven through a two-story inn by the impact.  When the demon pulled himself from the rubble, he decided his contract with the Summoner was up, and left with his spade-tipped tail between his wobbly legs.  The Summoner was then hit with the remains of his troll buddy and the last four, at this point, orcs ran for the hills.
What really made this game so awesome was that we were all playing first level characters.  Undortunately, we never got to play any more of that campaign, but it has gone down as a gaming group legend.  The Ragtags vs the Summoner's Platoon of Doom.
 member, 1394 posts
Sat 14 Jul 2018
at 09:59
Stories; Your best or your worst.
I had this dream thursday,

It is a bit dark, fair warning.

I was for once not dreaming of myself, but rather in my dream I was someone else, though I'm not sure who. It was a classroom, and the dream at this point had a sailor something vibe to it.

Well, the teacher came and the guardian animal sensed something out of place and suggested I use The Second Key.

I'm not quite certain how I knew, but I knew that the key created a dimension with a virtual world representing the inner mind or spirit if someone or someplace. In this case, it was a woman's mind.

The form taken had been of a castle, ruined and stormy, though the walls were still standing. The white stones were old and worn, but looked like they were good underneath. Atop the stones were wrought iron bars that seemed to bleed.

In the first hallway, I found, of all things, a keyblade named Guilty Conscience.

As I continued around the bend, it opened into a courtyard area. It was here that I found the woman. She was a single mother. She was highly stressed out and stern and demanding of her kids. But here we found that she felt insufficient. She constantly struggled to make ends meet and put on a brave face, but she missed so many things, like the various plays and other school events.

I don't remember the conversation very well here, but somehow I went from investigating this strange woman to being her child and yelling at her about missing the graduation or something. The woman then said that it wasn't until the 20th. Another lady, a spirit of some sort that appeared at just this moment but everyone acted like she was here all along, mentioned that the 20th was last week.

The woman went pale, realizing her mistake, and she slumped down and wept. As she did so, the wrought iron bars seemed to grow and weep more blood, and strangely, the bars were chained together.

It was a really weird and sad dream, but that keyblade seemed to so very well match it all. It looked like bloody wrought iron, with a chain attached to the blade from tip to middle to just above the hilt. The handle felt cold and rough, and blade was immensly heavy.

It has been etched in my mind. I'm not sure I'll ever forget it. But I wonder why I dreamt it. Where did it come from? Certainly nothing from my life.
 member, 285 posts
 Amoral Paladin
Sat 14 Jul 2018
at 12:53
Stories; Your best or your worst.
3.5 D&D, about 4 years ago...


When we last left our heroes, we had just bypassed an encounter with an aboleth and its skum slaves to go directly to the last boss of the dungeon: the Evil Morningstar artifact and its 4 giant skeleton guards. Having handily dispatched them all and subduing the relic, we spread the ashes of the previously deceased adventurers before the entrance of the tunnel and the dwarf popped up a Wall o' Stone to protect us so we could rest and recover for the night.

And I...I had a Plan.

"Don't worry, I have a Plan!" said I with confidence.

"Does it involve us being meatshields?" asked the dwarf, lacking my confidence.

"NO! Maybe..."

Evidence of the last night confirmed that skum had been checking out the wall while we rested. Verifying that yes, we had our respective spell slots refreshed, I asked the GM a simple question: How wide was the whirlpool the aboleth was lurking in? He gave his answer -- and my confidence grew as I shared the power of the Plan. And lo, my party members nodded in agreement as they too saw the brilliance of the Plan. And the eyes of the GM widened in shock as he realized the full scope of the Plan.

So we snuck back to the tunnel and, with the element of surprise backing us, had the dwarf cast Wall o' Stone -- horizontally over the whirpool, sealing the aboleth in for the time being. Mike meanwhile summoned a huge fire elemental to start having a fish fry with the skum and I got myself to a proper vantage point JUST in case.

The aboleth was NOT happy as its first attempt to break the wall of stone was less than successful. It was even more unhappier when the dwarf cast spike stones, thereby giving it even more of a headache and nickel & diming its HP away. Mike, Nicci, their respective dogs and the fire elemental were merrily taking names and kicking skum butt while I was readying myself...

...and the aboleth FINALLY broke the wall of stone and I read my fireball scroll to blast it in the face and take out the last skum to boot. It was still alive! It was angry! It was then flushed down the drain as the dwarf then cast Control Water to lower the water in the whirlpool.

It was at this point that the GM conceded the aboleth fled in shame.
 member, 1048 posts
Sat 14 Jul 2018
at 22:59
Stories; Your best or your worst.
Dear facemaker329,

Perhaps sometimes God moves in mysterious ways; just nudging some dice....
 member, 7032 posts
 Gaming for over 30
 years, and counting!
Sun 15 Jul 2018
at 04:27
Stories; Your best or your worst.
In reply to OceanLake (msg # 11):

Oh, I have a long string of 'dramatically appropriate dice' stories...botched rolls for highly competent characters, at times when the comedic effect was high and the chance of serious misfortune was low...spectacular successes on rolls that had a marginal chance of success, but were of vital importance to the welfare of the group...and a lot of great rolls that didn't necessarily impact the group, but ended up fitting perfectly with the character.  Even a few times where rolls that were initially considered a botch or a catastrophic result ended up playing to the party's total benefit...

Case in point (I'm in a storytelling mood tonight...sorry if it looks like I'm dominating the storytelling thread...)  One of my college roommates basically kit-bashed his own home-brew system, and created his own world to go with it, including a very complex pantheon of gods.  In one of the various groups he ran, we ended up tangling with a minotaur-lich...his plan, he later confessed, wasto bring the group to the brink of disaster and have one of the deities intercede, to recruit some of the characters as followers of a different sort (kind of like paladins, but not exactly...more than priests, though).

But we didn't know that, coming into it, and we were highly motivated, and pretty sure of our abilities as a group, since we'd tackled some pretty bad situations and come out triumphant on a consistent basis...

But, that night, the dice gods decided they were going to have some fun with us.  Everybody (except the lich) failed to do anything even remotely effective in the first round, and the lich managed to drop half the party to half their hit-points.  Second round comes up, and I'm looking at my character sheet, trying to figure out what to do...I have only a couple of weapons that will do anything to of them is a magically-regenerating 'Chaos arrow'...if you hit, you roll for the result...some are good for you, and some are good for whomever you shot, and a couple are basically there for the sake of confusion or comic relief.  Basically, it's a less-optioned Deck of Many Things, in weaponized form...and I'd already had a bad experience with a Deck of Many Things, so I REALLYdidn't want to use I tried something else (I don't recall what, for sure)--the only good it did was distract the lich so the magic-using characters in the group could actually get a couple of good shots in...

So, now the lich is wounded, angry, and closest to my character.  The magical weapon I had just tried I had one option left.  I pull the arrow as the lich rushes me and stab...roll the result--the arrow healed all damage.  I, and the group, were all ranting about our frustrations with the dice when I notice my roomie sitting there, with a look of disbelief on his face, the kind of look he got when I somehow managed to find a clever way around some really difficult situation he'd concocted.  I gave him a confused look...he looked back and said, "Think about it a minute...what happens when you use a healing spell on undead?"

And it dawned on me.  In my moment of desperation, I used an enchanted weapon of potentially deific power.  The lich didn't stand a chance of resisting it.  All his undeath was undone...and a withered minotaur skeleton collapsed at my feet.  But I'd been absolutely positive that I'd just undone what limited headway the group had been making...and had also thus effectively signed our death warrants, because there was no way we would have been able to repeat that much damage, plus do enough more to kill him before he squished us all like cockroaches.

The dice gods were definitely moving in mysterious ways that night...
 member, 286 posts
 Amoral Paladin
Sun 15 Jul 2018
at 13:21
Stories; Your best or your worst.
Same 3.5 D&D game from 4 years ago...


When we last left our heroes, we had been tasked to see if we could convince this evil necromancer if he would be so kind enough to teleport us to the Elemental Plane of Water so we could theorhetically safely dispose of the evil artifact dedicated to the god o' Slaughter.

Well, we started near the keep of the necromancer, managing to hide JUST as a gargantuan creature called a cadaver collector was making a delivery. This thing had ogre corpses as shoulder pads, for [MEEP]'s sake! We were all ready to make with the casting of various invisibility and silence spells to sneak in afterwards, when Mike suggested that "NO! We need to be up front about this. No doubt, this man is used to people sneaking to try to kill him -- let's use diplomacy!"

Oh, Mike... *sighs*

At the very least, we made sure that the gargantuan undead construct was GONE before attempting anything. And avoiding the sickly glowing energy trap on the front door. Compentency buff from Nicci and the stage was set for her to make with the diplomacy to see if we could get inside! She did an admirable job!


Mike suggested that we wait. After a few fast-forwarded hours, I noted that the trap had been turned off -- and the door was unlocked. Again, Mike wanted us all upfront. No sneaking!

So, when we turned the corner of one hall, we got jumped by a pack of shadows and their Very Special Friends. Before we could see if the diplomacy worked, the shadows appeared to be waiting for orders...and then said "[BLEEP] IT!" and attacked us.


...see, we were told by the necromancer's brother earlier that he REALLY like his undead. So, we decided that if we came across any undead, we couldn't really KILL them if we wanted to sway the necromancer into helping us. Hence why the ORIGINAL plan was to use Invisibility to Undead when we got here so we could avoid potential conflict. And this was something that the GM was expecting us to do.



Now, our cleric could at least turn the shadows. While I was griping out loud in case we were being scryed that they attacked first, so my conscience was clear, Nicci made with the Glitterdust -- and the shadows actually missed their save so they all got blinded. Blinded, confronted by a cleric and made to look sparkly, the shadows retreated -- but their Very Special Friends stayed behind to continue the fight.

Those friends? Two Shadesteel Golems.

Damage resistance, resistance to most spells, can't be critted or hit with sneak attacks, immune to mind affecting abilities and poison, super strong buggers anyway and they have this NASTY negative energy attack they can burst off every 1d4+1 rounds that would have healed those shadows if they had stuck around. So we were in for a MESS of hurt. Poor Snafu yet again nearly bit it. Mike turned into a bear, but held off summoning any of his friends (again, THANKS, MIKE!) but even with the various clerical and bardic buffs, we were barely nickel & diming them as it is. And what spells and magical items we all had weren't going to be of any use, we thought. In character, my rogue was useless.

Out of character, on the other hand...

*starts flipping through the PHB after my turn*

"Hey Mike, you've got THAT spell still on your list, right?"

Yes, it was a spell I remember he made a big deal about taking when he first designed his character. Even though he never ended up USING when it could have been really handy in that very first encounter we had with the berserker in the full plate mail way back when.

Mike's eyes went wide as he reacquainted himself just what exactly Rusting Grasp could do to a ferrous creature like a ShadeSTEEL Golem -- especially since he could do touch attacks on top of his other damage now.

So yeah, THAT saved our collective bacon. And I'm sure the argument could be made that the GM went easy on us, but he's a GM who doesn't usually pull punches. And he likes it when we think outside the box in terms of strategy.

We left it there for the night, after hammering into Mike's head that NOW we were going to break out the Invisibility to Undead spell.
 member, 40 posts
Tue 17 Jul 2018
at 14:17
Stories; Your best or your worst.
I think my best story has to be 1st edition Shadowrun.

Something had gone sideways and our crew was on the run.  We ended up on foot in a lot of warehouses chased by a helicopter with a minigun and a limo which a corpcop was using to pop out of the roof with a rocket launcher and fire off heavy ordinance every so often.  I'm sure he was having a grand time.

In this crew I was a physical adept.  For those of you unfamiliar with the game, it's kind of like a ninja.  Good at punchy-stabby.  Not so good at shooty-shooty.  Especially my guy - he grew up on the streets in a gang and learned how to fire exactly one firearm.  Poorly.

So the helicopter had our heavy hitters (troll street samurai, mage, etc) pinned down in a warehouse and the corpcop with the rocket launcher was closing in to finish them off.

Somehow my street ninja ended up separated from the group.  So when the limo pulls around, I ninja-up from behind, slide across the roof, and decapitate the corpcop. (Swords were in his skill set.)

Now I have a rocket launcher!  Yippie!  Except that I have no idea how to use it, nor do I think my ninja abilities can outrun a minigun.  So I have no way to get it to the heavy-hitters.  What do I do?  Fire it at the chopper of course!

At this time I need to explain the mechanics of 1st ed Shadowrun - just a bit.  Hang with me.  SR uses only 6 siders.  To succeed at a task, GM sets a target number.  If it's difficult, GM will set the number higher than 6 - like 10.  To achieve the target #, you needed to roll a 6.  Then roll the same die again and add the numbers together.  So if you roll a 6 and then a 4 or greater (with the same die) you made it!  The more skilled you were, the more dice you had.

I had 1 die because I'd only seen rocket launchers in movies.  (or Sims for those of you SR savvy)

So back to the story:  GM sighs and tells me to roll.  He knows my background.  I roll a 6.  Yippie!  I'm on the right path!  GM says "keep rolling".  I figure he set the target number in the 30's.   But I actually end up rolling six 6's and a 5!!

Against all odds, my firearm inept ninja saved the day!!
 member, 7033 posts
 Gaming for over 30
 years, and counting!
Tue 17 Jul 2018
at 16:52
Stories; Your best or your worst.
In reply to jwneil (msg # 14):

That's EXACTLY the kind of thing I mean when I refer to 'dramatically appropriate dice'...*grin*
 moderator, 15602 posts
 He's big, he's bad,
 but mostly he's Ron.
Tue 17 Jul 2018
at 17:48
Stories; Your best or your worst.
Think back, if you will, to an era when dinosaurs walked the Earth... there was only one edition of D&D, and the Traveller tag line "Science-Fiction Adventure in the Far Future" meant the 1980s...

I was a callow youth at that time, and a member of a group that were playing D&D.  Our party was investigating disappearances of merchant caravans along a trade route across the mountains.  We discovered that the pass was still locked in the depths of winter, which was unusual but not wholly unknown.

So we were poking about, and we found a cave in a cliff face below a glacier and decided to check it out.  A tunnel led deep into the mountain before opening into a large cavern, where there was a lake filled with chunks of broken pack ice.  From the far side of the chamber another very wide tunnel sloped up, and judging by the light at the top, probably opened under the bottom of the glacier itself.

As we contemplated our options, a large winged shape was suddenly silhouetted against the pale light at the top of the tunnel, and started down towards us, with an increasingly loud whooshing noise.  Somebody yelled, "Dragon!", and we panicked.  Then somebody else declared, "I'll jump into the lake, so I'm protected from it's fiery breath!"  And we all thought this was a good idea.

Which is why the entire party were standing up to our necks in very cold water when the white dragon burst into the cavern, blasted the lake with it's ice breath (with lots of failed saves, and much freezing of water), then strolled about on the frozen surface and bit everybody's heads off.

The lesson?  Just because somebody plays the smart wizard doesn't mean you should follow his plans...
 member, 524 posts
 Wayfarer of the
 Western Wastes
Wed 18 Jul 2018
at 02:08
Stories; Your best or your worst.
Don't really know if this would be my best or my worst (maybe some of both), but it was definitely my first.

The year was 1977, and I was stationed aboard a fast attack submarine in Reactor Controls Division, but was coming to the end of my tour.  I had just met the woman who was to become my first wife, but we were just dating back then, and I had no inkling of the horrors yet to come (yeah, that marriage didn't last).

My future ex introduced me to a friend of hers, a fellow by the name of Steven, who eked out a living by making Japanese ring mail (of museum quality, mind you) for local SCA types.  Steven was big into a game system by Dave Hargrave called The Arduin Grimoire and a milieu created by Prof. M.A.R. Barker called Tekumel, first described in the game Empire of the Petal Throne (abbreviated EPT hereafter).

Steven didn't much like EPT, but loved Arduin, so he built his Tekumel campaign with it, and had a whole mound of handwritten notes and a high-powered magnifying glass (he was legally blind) to read the closely packed tables and charts he had drawn up.  Arduin was an over-complicated mess of a system, but Steven made it sing.

I didn't much know Arduin from Alaska's tuchis, but I was willing to try anything to experience Tekumel, having read everything I could get my hands on concerning it short of plunking down $25.00 of my pitiful military pay for EPT (that was a fair chunk of money back in '77, y'know... it was worth several pitchers of draft beer!).

Steven shrugged his shoulders and said, "Why not try my Tekumel?"

A half-hour later I had a character: a Vietnamese terrorist named Phred (any Doonesbury fans out there?)  Little did I know that Steven was about to translate this human character into something called a Phraint (an insectoid race) that he then converted into the actual character I would play, a Pe Choi named Ph'rh'ed.

Well... we played from that afternoon, my future ex playing a female human warrior (an Aridani) called Shardra hiSolensa (no relation to the Arduin NPC Shardra the Castrator, but you couldn't prove it by me...) and off we went on my first journey into the tsuru'umyal (the underdark).  By some unfathomable miracle we survived.  It was near sunrise the following day when we broke up the game.

I was hooked.  We three played together every chance we got until my change of station orders came, and by then my trajectory was more or less ballistic:  I was to report to an aircraft carrier bound for the yards for my last eighteen months of service (the equivalent of shore duty), and married my future ex on 31 Dec 1977.

Over the next five years I was to pay a stiff price for this first pleasant encounter in gaming, but I'd pay it again if I had to - gaming is one of the brighter bright spots in my life.
 member, 287 posts
 Amoral Paladin
Wed 18 Jul 2018
at 12:25
Stories; Your best or your worst.
named Phred (any Doonesbury fans out there?)

*raises hand*

I had a stuffed bunny named after Phred as a kid (my sister had a bunny named BD).
 member, 969 posts
Wed 18 Jul 2018
at 14:19
Stories; Your best or your worst.
In reply to jwneil (msg # 14):

Was in a WEGs Star Wars game where something like that happened.  We were pinned down behind cover by a platoon of Stormtroopers.  None of us is able to risk popping up to shoot at them.
 The noble dilettante, with only a movie familiarity with blasters, decides to pop up only her hand with her blaster above to cover to begin firing blindly at the Stormies.
In WEGs, you roll a number of 6 sided equal to your attribute number, with one designated as the Wild Die.  On the Wild Die, a 1 counts as 0 and subracts your highest roll from your total.  A 6 explodes, like Shadowrun.  You keep rolling until you get something other tham 6 and add them all together.  Well, this particular player just kept getting a 6 on his Wild Die.  Finally, the GM put his hand down on the die, then told us that suddenly, all was quiet.  There was no more incoming blaster fire.  When our characters looked, every last Stormtrooper, and entire platoon, lay dead, shot by this unskilled noble who was firing blindly.
Good thing all of them were dead, too.  Because, I'm.pretty sure none of the survivors would had survived Darth Vader's questions.
 member, 41 posts
Wed 18 Jul 2018
at 14:31
Re: Stories; Your best or your worst.
In reply to jwneil (msg # 14):

  Well, this particular player just kept getting a 6 on his Wild Die.  Finally, the GM put his hand down on the die, then told us that suddenly, all was quiet.  There was no more incoming blaster fire.  When our characters looked, every last Stormtrooper, and entire platoon, lay dead, shot by this unskilled noble who was firing blindly.

Nice!!  Kind of like the movie True Lies where Jamie Lee Curtis drops the sub machine gun down the stairs and by the time it lands, it's killed off all the enemies.

Those one-in-a-million shots are some of the most fun moments!!!   :)