Archive for March 2012

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away….

When Imperial scientists discovered that the Black Metal could be used to carbonize living being indefinitely, they also realized that they could trigger a dangerous side effect – a transmogrification process which replaced the subject’s skin with Black Metal. However, the mortality rate of this process was close to 100%, so the effects of a successful transmogrification wasn’t thoroughly studied until an Imperial Destroyer landed on the Wild World and managed to transmogrify an animal there. But the cost of this knowledge was high, as the beast continued to break free and kill off most of the crew. The rest died from the Black Death, which they had managed to contract during one of their exploration runs of the planet.

After someone have been carbonized inside a black metal container, four buttons are inserted into the metal slab. A green, red, blue and yellow button. The green button starts the transmogrification process, the red de-carbonizes the subject, the blue levitates the 2.000 pounds heavy slab, and the yellow button evaporates the slab, turning the subject into a permanent Black Metal statue with little hope of ever being returned into a living being again. However, evidence suggests that Black Metal statues (unlike mere carbonized subjects) are aware of their surroundings at all times, and could in theory become trapped in an eternal nightmare.

The Transmogrification Process:
To survive the process, you need to succeed 10 consecutive CON checks. The DC starts at 21 and increases by 1 until the last check at 30. If you fail a check, your body and the rest of the slab become a black liquid at first, before it evaporates totally. however, should you survive the 10 checks, your skin has been replaced with Black Metal, and you are permanently changed in the following ways:

You have become a construct subtype, and no longer need air or sustenance. You also stop aging and will never die of old age.
You can never wildshape, shapechange, polymorph or in any other way change your physical appearance.
You are immune to all effects which require a CON check.
+50 natural AC
You only take 10% physical damage.
you are immune to mind-affecting effects.
+50% MS/HS
You are impervious to non-epic spells and weapons.
You are not subject to critical hits, subdual damage, ability damage, ability drain, fatigue, exhaustion or energy drain.
Your natural attacks (bite not included) ignore armor, are treated as Ghost touch and deal structural damage (but do not ignore stoneskin or deal impact/crushing damage).

Miracle and Ancient Curse are not really spells, but in terms of potency, they are a step above Epic Spells. Therefore they are not affected by antmagic, dead magic or wild magic zones.

Miracle can duplicate any divine spell from level 1-7. It is also the only thing which will cure an Ancient Curse. It will not have any of the drawbacks which normally follows some divine spells (such as Raise dead and Resurrection). If Miracle is used offensively, it will bypass any MR. If it is used to heal/cure, you can have as many targets as your caster level, and the base effect is 1000 % (a Cure Light wounds will heal 80 hp), while the range is 10 times the normal range. Items/abilities which boost the potency of spells are added on top of this. Miracle can also be used to create any magic item in the DMG (with the exception of artifacts/relics and cursed items), but this will permanently drain you of 1 hp pr. 500XP point of the created item. It can also be used as a Permanency spell (lvl 8 wizard spell), draining you of 5 hp pr. application (but no CON loss).

Ancient Curse negates any Magic Resistance or Immunities. The only time non-demigods are allowed a save against Ancient curse is if your character level or HD is higher than the one casting it. In such an event, the “save” is an opposed CHA check (Demigods and higher automatically gets an opposed CHA check, with a +4 bonus in favor of the recipient). Casting Ancient Curse lowers all your ability scores by 1 for 24 hours A successfully cast Ancient curse permanently drains you of 1 hp pr. lvl/HD of your victim (your hp is returned if the Curse is lifted by Miracle, which is also your way of knowing if the curse is still in effect).

 

An Ancient Curse is extremely potent and can cause one of the following random permanent effects:

Cut your hit rating in half.
Cut your AC in half.
Cut all your dmg in half.
Cut your saves in half.
Remove all your MR.
Remove all your DR.
Lower any one random ability score down to 3.
Give all your attack rolls a 50% miss chance.
Lower 1 CON every round until you die.
Remove your movement rating. You can no longer move your body.
Cause Blindness/Deafness/Confusion (as per spell)/Feeblemind.
All your children die within 1 round.
All your siblings die within 1 round.
Your parents and grandparents die within 1 round.
Your highest level henceman dies within 1 round.
Any d20 roll of 20 is now an automatic 1.
Remove all your spellcasting abilities (with the exception of Miracle).
Remove all your Spell-Like abilities.
Roll twice more on this table.
Roll once more on this table and once on the next table.

Remove all your Supernatural abilities.
You are unable to use any kind of weapon in which you have the most WPs.
You are unable to read/write any text or communicate with any being intelligibly (this includes sign & body language).
Every time you deal damage, yourself and all friendlies within 100 feet take the same amount of damage.
Every time you cast a spell (with the exception of Miracle), you lose a level.
Every time you attack someone , you lose a level.
Every time you speak (with the exception of spellcasting), you lose one random ability score.
Your body turns horribly ugly within 1 turn and everyone you meet, will hate you and alienate you, while a stench will follow you, causing nausea to everyone within 10 feet.
Air is now poisonous to you, and you will die within 1 turn unless you manage to submerge yourself in salt water, which is now the only substance you can now live in.
Every time you roll any die (rolling 10d6 counts as rolling 10 dice), you lose 1 hp permanently.
You can never fast heal, regenerate or by any other means heal any damage done to you.
No matter how hard you try, you can never affect anyone in a way which causes hp dmg to them.
You become allergic to living beings. You lose 1% of your original hp every round a living being is within 100m of you.
Every time there is less than a 50% chance something you attempt will succeed, you will fail.
You must kill and drink the blood of someone of your own race every night or lose 1 random ability score every night you fail to do so (the person killed cannot be brought back to life again).
You forget your whole adventuring career and become a level 1 practitioner of your original class (all abilites/hp/everything is lost).
You are moved into a parallell universe where you were never born (Which is the same campaign as everyone is playing, it’s just that you remember everything you all did together while they have no idea who you are and probably never will – unless you manage to devise a solution somehow with the help of your DM. You still have all your powers and abilities, but you are stuck in a world where your presence is an impossibility.).
You are Slowed, and cannot benefit from effects similar to Haste and Blinding Speed.
You are turned into a Black Metal statue.
Your body becomes lifeless while your soul is trapped in the Dreamlands by a Dream Hydra (who will dare launching a rescue operation?).

Mokferuso sat down at one of the computers, and his fingers magically touched the letters, thereby bringing text on the screen. After a while he realized one thing; the ship was without power, except from the emergency generator now activated. At level 6, however, he found a fault notification, so the new crew on this ship decided to do some research down at level 6. They all entered the elevator and pressed 6.

At level 6 they could choose from 3 exits. They found ships, -lots of them, used for exploration above and beneath water. Elevator ramps for moving these huge vehicles were strategically placed in the center of the room. And they found bodies, but these had died by Black Death, not being ripped into small pieces by claws. They entered one of them, and the ship was in remarkably good shape. The ship’s computer told us the story about how the personnel excavated the planet for plants and wild life, and how tiny people was harvested and transported back here. They also found armors, especially made to travel at large depths, making the wearer able to survive in the abyss for a month. A weaponry was also discovered, with blaster rifles and pistols as well as grenades. A plan how to get the whale was slowly forming in Mokferuso’s mind. They also found manuals for different feats; armor I-IV, cautious, gear head, multishot blasters, spacer, starship dodge, starship operations, zero gravity combat; a great place for self-confident adventurers to broaden their view.

Suddenly Mokferuso and Anthrax froze, like something excited had happened. Later they could tell the others that the unknown passenger had showed up on their radar, but disappeared, like like … yeah, like he plane shifted? Anthrax correctly assumed he/she/it was now was in shadow plane, lurking somewhere, but needed to be in the real plane to change floors.

The party god an idea; why not use Time Pool to get information about the soon-to-be opponent, at the time when the commander and his life guards were killed? Anthrax shapechanged into a draconic sapphire dragon, and the minute after, the mirror revealed information from the past; a black creature, able to plane shift, with sharp claws made his way through the cabin door, some sort of cat with 8 feet, about 1 meter long attacked with blinding speed and killed its opponents with its sharp claws. It gave considerably damage, and disappeared in a shadow. Good guess, Anthrax!

They decided to enter level 8, where they knew the lab was supposed to be. The lab, however, was in a terrible condition. Total chaos! Dead people, books, test tubes, personal belongings and a pile of extracted tiny people met us. But the lab was huge, as well as the living quarter next to it. Lot of interesting stuff, but a rectangular slab of something resembling black metal with a statue inside caught our attention. Mokferuso checked the journal; the last carbon process had been initiated by one of the researchers, and the end result would be that the skin would be shifted with black metal, -if you survive 10 constitution checks DC 21-30. Prior to the last transformation, a semi-intelligent, trusty, catlike creature with 8 feet had been through the same process. The journal did not say, but we guessed it had some devastating consequences to the crew. The green button would complete the process, so we pushed it. The scientist didn’t manage his checks, died and evaporated. This transformation would give the recipient some marvelous properties, but as usual, also some drawbacks (GM will make an article).

20 potions were found. Another journal told a story of 2 million dead tiny people, and their energies being transformed into these potions; potential giving the person drinking these some powers within something called “The force”; force points, feats etc. Constitution checks starting at 20 with at +2 for each potion.
When the party discussed these findings, Anthrax suddenly saw a shadow moving within this room. He calmly notified the others, but they did not pay attention to the threat. Instead Knarg and Romana decided to try the transformation process, thereby gaining new abilities, hopefully providing them better chances to survive future treats. And they both survived! Hurray! Anthrax wasn’t so pleased being watched, so he shifted his presence to shadow plane. The monster immediately attacked him, so he used his blaster rifle and shot the beast 4 times. And everyone who have seen Anthrax do damage, know he deals a lot. But the creature kept on running towards him, and attacked with teeth and claws. Anthrax shifted back to the real plane, and Mokferuso threw Gungne at the catlike creature, but it didn’t die. Instead it attached itself to Anthrax with its teeth, trying to use its claws. Stoneskin has never been more welcomed than that day! The next round Anthrax finished the beast, but suddenly it started to split, and instead of one dead monster we now had two live monsters. Now the heroes had to think. The solution was the “Damnation” spell. Anthrax threw the spell at one of the beasts, and “poof”, -it was gone! Mokferuso hit the other with the same spell, and “poof”, it was gone too. Cheers and hurrays’ echoed in the halls, as everyone knew this was a victory. Mokferuso and Anthrax shook hands, congratulating each other with the sudden, and most welcomed, defeat.

Epilogue:
Ottamata started to make the commander quarter into his private shrine. He has planned to go through the same test as Knarg and Romana, but will not take the chance to perish.
At level 16 we found some small one crew ships. They were quite potent, and may be used for whale hunting…

Mokferuso, Arazaka and Ottamata
Vest Hero Party

The transporter found on level 6.

 

White smaller version of the monster encountered.

Mokferuso took a second glance at the Codex of the Demigods. It was tempting, calling his name, but the risk was high, -at least if one got to greedy. But confident of his own capacity, -and his ability to reroll an unfavorable dice, he opened the Codex. He was first hit by an intense pain; it was like the Codex tried to overcome his defenses and annihilate him.  Mokferuso tried to focus on survival, and a spit second later he won. The first three days he read, he had no luck, but the next 6 days he managed to get trick some knowledge from the Codex (shark taming proficiency, +1 STR, DR +10/all, +5 physical dmg, +1 CON, and a second NWP).

Meanwhile, Arazaka Hara had some thoughts about the lake people. Without a Miracle spell, someone had to help the tribe or the ancient plague would wipe them all out. But was it a correct action to perform, -seen from a natural point of view? The answer had to be “yes”; we brought the plague to this valley of Eden, and they have no remedy, -yet. Since Mokferuso didn’t pay anyone but the Codex any attention, he asked Anthrax if he would join him back to the sky palace. Anthrax Goldheart agreed, and they used the teleport as transportation. The dead draconic lich was dead as ever. We found the key to the entrance and entered. The dryads were surprised to see us so soon, but Arazaka calmly explained why they were there and what his mission was. The explanation made sense, and the team of two found the lake people and explained that Arazaka would oversee them as the plague broke out. They agreed to eat his Hero’s feast, -as long as it tasted good. Anthrax oversaw the feasts, and when he saw the progress Arazaka made, he left for the library.

Anthrax started to read in the relatively small book named “The Stargate”. It explained how to use the Stargate as well as emphasizing on the fact that you could travel between different kinds of universes, -not within a universe. On the cover we found some coordinates to origin of the Stargate. On demand, and with a little help, Romana wrote the coordinates to the “Wild World” and “City of Union”.  The book also explained a fail/safe mechanism; If you don’t know the right coordinates; instead of you being teleported to the right spot, something … let’s say ugly, will be teleported to you! Hah, -fancy that!
Atlanteia had a small briefing about making antidotes. She couldn’t tell precisely how to make the antidote; -if we in fact managed to get the gland from the demigod whale, but if she saw it, she might be able. Anyway, -it’s probably the best shot we’ll get. I hope she brought her travel laboratory with her.

After reading, we travelled to the lake with the demigod whale. “I recon we’ve seen this before”, Knarg uttered. And yes, we had passed it two times. The reason we all knew we had been here before, was quite obvious; there was a humongous military ship in this lake, and with excitement and enthusiasm we all flew there as quickly as possible, -invisible, of course. The ship was metallic, and it was quite obvious that it had been here for a while, due to alga and vegetation. Some flying dinosaurs had inhabited the upper deck. We noticed some kind of flying dish on top of the vessel, and we landed. The ship looked like an enclosed floating fortress. We found a door and pushed some buttons close by.

“Tssssshhhhh”. A load noise filled the air, and the door opened. We entered and closed the door behind us. Mokferuso bravely pushed some buttons further in, and another door opened. This room was big, some 18 times 18 meters, filled with foul air, computers, dead bodies wearing black uniforms; ripped in small pieces, elevator, desktops, and 3 other rooms; 2 machine rooms and one situation room. We found one button with some light, saying “emergency generator”. Mokferuso and Anthrax picked something in their dragon senses, -a creature of some sort hid somewhere below them. We pushed the button, and electricity suddenly filled the ship, lit the lights, started up the computers, and whatever lured somewhere in the ship, has left the radar for now.
“Whatever it is, -it’s strong!” Ottamata had for once opened his mouth and pointed in the direction of the elevator, where we could see how the beast had made its way through solid iron. We all went over to have a look. It didn’t look promising, but we found another button which we pushed (of course!). The elevator arrived, and we all entered and went to the first floor.

We entered through a hole in the door, a circular room with chairs and computers, screens covering whole walls; a command centre of some sort. A door went into some private quarters, and we found 3 bodies, -powerful armors covered them, but they didn’t do the victims any good. Heavy guns. We discovered the commander among them, dead as a dead dodo.  We found a journal…
The ship was part of some wild experiment. Agents were sent out throughout the universe to discover interesting places, and they returned from the wild world with smiles on their faces. The planet was filled with energy, and the tiny people were the source. They gathered two million of them, and somehow extracted the energy. But an experiment went wrong at floor 8, and a creature broke loose. He was somehow enhanced mechanically (?). Anyway, it’s not a wild guess to assume that this creature somehow tried to even the score. We found some manuals in a technological library; Astrogate (25), Computer use (29), Demolitions (29), Disable device (17), Pilot (27) and Repair (3). All DC’s 30.

To be continued…

Mokferuso, Arazaka and Ottamata
The Hero Party

 

The naval vessel found in Wild World.