The Zone of Adventure: Bonds and Balance

Thunderlock Bar Crawl
Fame, loot, and free food await!

While our heroes were hanging out on the Moon Base after the eclipse, Robby brought them a pamphlet advertising the Thunderlock Tavern Crawl. The pamphlet explained that Murploc Tickler and Famous Thunderhand, two retired adventurers, had grown tired of seeing young adventurers going to battle unprepared. Murploc and Famous therefore created a less-lethal dungeon under their tavern, as a training ground and test for would-be adventurers.

Our heroes, drawn by the lure of loot, fame, and free food, convinced the Director to expense the trip. They even got to take an extra-large sphere, which allowed them to bring some friends from the Moon Base to serve as an audience.

Once they arrived at the Thunderlock Tavern, our heroes agreed to the terms and entered.
Two statues stood in the entrance holding braziers. The one on the left was lit with a magical red flame, but the one on the right was not. After Xander discovered that the flame was not hot, Stick reached inside and found a key. Xander, meanwhile, lit the other brazier with magic, and the heroes heard a sound deeper in the dungeon.

After a recording inviting them to enter played a few times, the heroes stepped through the doorway into the dungeon proper. A spiked portcullis lowered behind them.

Leucis had the fastest reflexes and took off running across some uneven ground. Stick and Xander followed, but before they could cross, the ground began to move. Stick kept his footing, but Xander fell. Meanwhile, blunted crossbow bolts began to fire from the other end of the hallways, striking our heroes several times.

Leucis found between two rune-bedecked walls, which began to spew fire at him. Stick thought about going back to help Xander, but the resourceful drow cast Fly and zoomed over the treacherous ground, past the flame runes, over a pit of acid crossed by three planks.

Leucis began to cross the planks, but Xander was struck by a crossbow bolt and fell from the sky. He hit the plank Leucis stood on, throwing Leucis into the air. The nimble tiefling managed to land on the nearby plank, but Xander fell into the calf-deep acid, ruining his new boots.

Once Stick and Leucis had crossed the planks and Xander had hauled himself from the acid, they found themselves between two stone faces. One stone face spewed spores which had Leucis and Stick wandering, dazed. The other face let out a thunderous sound that struck our heroes like a blow.

Xander escaped first. Leucis pulled himself together and got out of there. Stick, still poisoned and woozy, somehow managed to stumble in the right direction and got out of the room.
They found themselves on a walkway encircling a pit. On the other side of the room, two wooden doors flanked a stone door. On the room’s right and left walls, two gateways led to side chambers. Meanwhile, a bundle of rags and feathers in the center of the room revealed itself to be Patchy, an animatronic owlbear. As Patchy came online, a recording played a voice saying, “Rawr! I’m a monster, rawr!”

The side room on the right contained a chest with four locks: bronze, electrum, copper, and silver. A shimmery effect hung over the left side of the room, where an alcove had been recently revealed. Our heroes guessed that Xander relighting the brazier had dispelled some sort of magic blocking off the alcove. Xander investigated and discovered, among other things, an adamantine dagger which dealt extra damage to objects.

The side room on the left was somewhat more perilous: shelves lined the walls, with skulls on the shelves like some sort of skull library. A skullbrary, if you will.

On the far side of the room, a lever stuck out of the ground. Leucis tried moving it with Mage Hand, but the skulls in the room came to life and started to fly through the air and attack! The flying skulls were mostly human-sized, though some larger ogre skulls also joined the fight.

As more and more skulls took off and joined the fight, our heroes dealt with them with magic and blade. Meanwhile, Patchy continued to be a problem. Leucis blinded Patchy and some skulls with magical darkness, then stood out of Patchy’s reach and Xander dispatched it.

Leucis, growing frustrated with the annoyingly persistent skulls, withdrew his Horn of Blasting for its maiden usage, the explosive nature of the Horn and potentially lethal danger to the bearer had kept Leucis quite apprehensive about utilizing the instrument until now . With a deafening sound, the horn turned the flying skulls, and most of the skulls on the shelves, to fragments and dust. The heroes were then able to get the lever all the way to the left, though what effect this had, they still did not know.

Our heroes found keys inside the ogre skulls, which seemed to correspond to the locks in the other room: an ornate bronze key with a flame motif, an ornate electrum key with a wave motif, an ornate copper key with a lightning motif, an ornate silver key with a skull motif, and an ornate brass key with an eye motif. They also found a rusty iron key.

Leucis investigated the two wooden doors and the stone door and found that the wooden doors would probably take a long time to break down or burn. The stone door had four bolts holding it closed.

At this point, Xander suggested continuing to move the lever back and forth until something happened. Stick, however, had grown frustrated with the lever, so he headed over to the room with the chest with four locks. As he tried to open it, it disappeared, revealing a pit where the chest had been. Stick narrowly avoided falling inside. A moment later, four smaller chests shimmered into view around the room. They were made of metals matching the locks on the illusory chest and the keys in the other room: bronze, electrum, copper, and silver. Leucis cast detect magic in the room, but did not find anything magical. Stick tried the bronze key in the bronze chest, but it snapped off. Stick next tried the copper key in the copper chest, but it snapped as well. Xander recommended trying to pick the locks on the remaining chests. Stick discovered that the silver box was not quite latched, and he opened it to find a potion of fire breathing inside.

The remaining, electrum chest remains unopened.

Our heroes are left with a puzzle:
How can they open the four bolts on the stone door?
How can they get through the wooden doors?
What does the lever in the skullbrary do?
What opens the chests in the chest room, and what is inside?

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[In-between-Adventure-Anecdotes] Collecting Coin at The Lunar Lady

Scene: Leucis and Robby are chummin it up at the local MoonPub, The Lunar Lady, after gettin blitzed on some of Robby’s “Fry Juice”…


Robby: Oh man! I neeeeed to hear some tunes bro! Haha, I can like SEE the MUSIC!
Leucis: I got you my buddy, here let’s see what’s on this old Jukebox.


Leucis smacks the Fantasy-Steampunk-JukeBox with a fist and it whirs to life, he turns back to Robby with an, “Eyyyy!!!“

The other patrons turn in their seats to look back at the two and the bartender groans as the first few chords of “Through The Fire and The Flames” begins to rock the establishment on its foundations. Leucis grins ear to ear and whips out his Lute to play along and throws down his cap for donations…

Leucis’s fingers are a blur as he struggles to keep pace with the frantic song while sweat begins to build upon his horned brow. The crowd is transfixed, they’ve never seen anything like it. As the crescendo of the song reaches its fevered peak the sheer force of the performance of this epic ballad blows the audiences minds. Hats are blasted off of heads, cigars are dropped from slacked jaws, several customers faint, the chandelier on the ceiling rocks nearly hard enough to detach from the ceiling, and beverages close to the improvised stage are vaporized into steam.

Finally the song concludes and after a moment of stunned silence a terrific cheer rises from the crowd. A shower of nickels fly in from all directions and neatly deposit themselves in Leucis’ Tam o’ Shanter.

Leucis scans the crowd for Robby, realized that he’d been so focused on the song that he’d forgotten all about his drinking buddy. Finally, he finds him on his side in a booth near the Jukebox.

Robby: Oh man! I blacked out like 30 seconds in, but that was amaaaazing! Don’t worry about it dude, I black out like… pretty much all the time. The doctors said that’s maybe part of my brain stuff and why I can’t like… uh… wait, what were we talking about?

Leucis: Oh dear… Well my lad,  I’m glad you had fun and I did too but I think I had best get you back to the dorm so you can get some rest… and I think I’ve got the munchies… Did you have any of those Prings left?

..fin..

 

(Note: Leucis collected 120gp from his little performance, but was subsequently banned from performing at The Lunar Lady henceforth unless properly booked through the proper channels.)

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Murder on the Rockport Express

They rode a train, made some new friends, and successfully collected The Oculus!

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Moonlighting

Although he was tempted to recover it and equip it for himself, with some encouragement from his fellow partymembers, Xander was able to overcome the temptation and gather the Gauntlet safely. Killian addressed the party's growing confusion about the events they to which they were witness, and promised that all would be revealed, and they would be rewarded, if they went with her, and brought the Gauntlet with them. She revealed the bracer on her arm, which she used to summon a seemingly magic glass transportation sphere. They boarded the sphere, which then sprouted a balloon and lifted off the ground, carrying them high in the sky. By this time, it was getting pretty dark out, and the dark obsidian circle on the ground where the Lonesome Coach used to be was strangely beautiful, almost reflecting the stars and moons in the sky, in spite of the death and destruction it represented.

As the sphere rose higher and higher in the sky, they noticed one of the two moons getting larger much faster than they would have expected, as if it was much closer than they thought. They arrived at the moon, only to discover that it's actually a secret base in the sky! A porthole opened and allowed them to enter, where they landed in a hangar-type area and met Avi, a friendly-seeming fellow who offered them some brandy to help with the strange headache they were all experiencing.

They were escorted to an elevator, where they met a musician named Johan, who played them a great song, but seemed pretty sad that no one else would ever hear it, or most of his other music. This is because the song then got fed to the Voidfish, a strange jellyfish-like creature they encountered at the end of the elevator ride. Upon drinking some water from the Voidfish's tank, their headaches all disappeared and they received a flood of memories, including the memory of the words "Phoenix Fire Gauntlet" whenever Killian had previously spoken to them, the memory of Johan's song, which had briefly disappeared from their minds after being fed to the Voidfish, and the memory of a horrific war in the relatively recent history of their world, a war they were shocked to have forgotten about, until they later learned that the memories of everyone in the world had been manipulated.

As it turns out, the Moonbase is run by the Bureau of Balance, an organization dedicated to finding and destroying the Grand Relics, several extremely powerful magical objects created by rogue wizards, and the cause of the Great War that they had forgotten about. These relics were so powerful and so desirable that their very existence caused people to fight for them. Eventually, the woman who would become the Director of the BoB decided to do something about it, so she used the Voidfish to erase everyone's memory of the Relics, and the War, founded the Bureau, and started hunting for the Relics. The party members were convinced to hand over the Phoenix Fire Gauntlet, which was wheeled into a special chamber by the Director's personal assistant, a gnome named Wizziwigg, where the Director used her white oak staff to destroy it.

After passing a Test of Initiation during which the party used their bravery, strength, and smartness to defeat a trio of ogres, they were invited to join the Bureau of Balance as the newest Reclaimers, a position dedicated to actually retrieving and bringing in Relics, as they were the only people to have ever actually done so successfully. They were glad to accept the position, as well as the rewards that came with it. They each received sack of gold, and a token to spend in the Fantasy Gachapon machine. At the Gachapon, Stick got Boots of the Winterlands, Xander got a Wand of Smiles, and Leucis got a Horn of Blasting.

Wanting to spend some of their hard-earned gold, they proceeded over to the Fantasy Costco, where they met an strange, indescribable shadow creature that called itself Garfield the Deals Warlock. And boy did he have great deals for them! They each left with several useful and amusing magic items, including a Bag of Holding, a Ring of Pointing, an Unlimited Pasta Pass, a couple of Alchemist Rings, and several Potions of Healing.

However, arriving back at their new dorm room after shopping, they were dismayed to discover that, although the Director had told them that they'd be rooming with each other, what she failed to mention is that they will be staying in a four-person room! And thus they met their new roommate, Robby.

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The Lightwatch Tower: The Rescue and Aftermath

After spending several hours in the chapel resting, the party proceeded into the tower itself, where they found yet more skeletons and spiders. They proceeded to deal with them, hampered by all the broken beams and debris on the floor. The tower clearly had an upper story and a staircase at some point in the past, but now it just had wooden rubble. When they felt secure that all threats were dealt with, they took the time to clear the floor around a trapdoor Stick discovered. Inside the trapdoor was what appeared to be a lair for a giant spider. They dealt with this spider in the most efficient way possible – with fire! With some quick thinking, they improvised a grenade, which resulted in the spider, as well as its webbing, burning, while they fired arrows and blowgun darts at it.

After the room was clear, they discovered a hallway leading away from it. The hallway was quite cold, and seemed to pulse with cold energy every so often. Some ways down the hallway they discovered a chest with some quite gruesome food-storage jars, including a pickled torso and several dozen frozen spider eggs. At the end of the hallway, they discovered a kitchen, of sorts, with a cage containing the object of their quest – Orlin Swift. He was grateful to be freed, although he seemed somewhat indignant at how long he was in captivity before anyone came to free him. Meanwhile, Xander recovered a gem from the kitchen's oven, which he later learned was the oven's heat source, as it has a steam mephit bound to it.

Attached to the kitchen area was an unoccupied bedroom, containing a chest. While attempting to open the chest, the party was interrupted by the half-orc they had previously met, Killian, who was looking for what they later learned was the Phoenix Fire Gauntlet. While the party was distracted talking to Killian, Orlin managed to open the chest, where he found his belongings, including his lute. He also discovered the Gauntlet within the chest (it was unclear whether it previously belonged to him or not) and immediately equipped it, much to Killian's horror. He seemed overcome with the Gauntlet's power and used it to bore a hole through the hillside.

The party followed him back to the Lonesome Coach, where they attempted to talk him into unequipping the Gauntlet, but did not succeed in this task. Killian, realizing what was about to happen, encouraged them to jump into a nearby well, just as Orlin, and/or the Gauntlet, exploded, obliterating everything in sight, in a fireball the likes of which none of them had ever seen.

Upon climbing out of the well, they discovered that the entire area surrounding the Lonesome Coach (as well as the inn itself) had been completely destroyed, with nothing remaining but a large scorched obsidian glass circle where the fireball had gone off. In the center of this glass plate sat the Phoenix Fire Gauntlet.

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The Lightwatch Tower: Boss Fight!

Although the back door of the chapel was covered in a poisonous type of ivy, and the front door was barred from the inside, the group managed to find a way in through a broken window. Inside the preternaturally dark chapel, they found a few more skeletons like the ones they had previously fought, but also one more, with a large gem embedded in its forehead! After heroically slaying this group of undead creatures, as well as several spiders, Leucis claimed the skull with the gem as a trophy and put it in his bag.

At this point, the group noticed that one of the flagstones in the floor seemed newer than the rest, and could be moved. Underneath, they found a hidden space with several items inside – a belt buckle featuring the symbol of the Lonesome Coach, a red cloak with a mysterious patch, a magic pipe, a magic key, a magic tankard, and a mystery powder, which they later identified as Mystery Powder, as well as quite a bit of gold. After searching the broken and crumbled altar and finding nothing of note, they moved on to the tower.

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The Lightwatch Tower: The Approach

Leucis, Xander, and Stick were hired to find Orlin Swift. Swift was a bard who was supposed to be dealing with the desert-dwellers for a map of the desert oases, but he disappeared without completing his mission. Our <s>heroes</s> characters rode their camels through the desert to the Lonesome Coach inn. The innkeeper, Delb Mattockblade, let them know that Orlin Swift had passed through there. The bard had been interested in legends surrounding the nearby Lightwatch Tower, but Delb doubted he would have gone there, because only an idiot would want to go to such a dangerous place.

The adventurers immediately decided to go to the Lightwatch Tower.

They learned from Lawrence, their server, that the Lightwatch Tower was built by a half-elf, half-fiend paladin named Rowena whose lover was a tiefling warlock named Moesing. The two had a child, and legend had it that the child's demonic nature had brought doom to its parents and cursed the tower. Lawrence himself had visited the tower once, with his lover, Delb's son. Lawrence had fled the tower, but Delb's son had died there.

Leucis played a song to pay for his lodging, to the approval of Delb Mattockblade and the patrons. After the adventurers rested for the night, they set off for the tower.

The tower was composed of two parts: the tower itself, and a lower building that served as a sort of entrance hall. One side of that building was covered in ivy that Stick identified as a type of nettle that lured victims close. The group decided to steer clear.

When Stick went to tie up their camels in a nearby copse of trees, he saw a rusted cauldron among the trees. A moment later, a golden skeleton jumped out of the cauldron. The fight was on!

After the group dispatched the skeleton, they discovered that its bones were gilded, rather than being gold all the way through. As they began to bury the skeleton for later, a patrolling group of skeletons appeared.

Leucis distracted the skeletons with a rockin' song and savage disses. Xander engaged the skeletons from a distance with magic. Stick attacked with his swords, and was soon joined by Xander, who couldn't stand to see the goblin fight alone.

Once the skeletons were all defeated, Leucis recommended keeping the bones. He felt confident that he could convince someone that the bones were truly gold!

The group now faces the tower, wondering what secrets it might contain…..

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Stick's Stories: Desert Doom

Stick was exploring in the desert when he came across what seemed to be an ancient temple carved with fire into a large sand dune. Cautiously exploring it, he discovered and dispatched several large desert insects, as well as some bandits and some fire cultists. He gained some pretty cool loot in the process, but oddly enough, the loot seemed to be more water-themed than fire-themed!

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Welcome to your campaign!
A blog for your campaign

Wondering how to get started? Here are a few tips:

1. Invite your players

Invite them with either their email address or their Obsidian Portal username.

2. Edit your home page

Make a few changes to the home page and give people an idea of what your campaign is about. That will let people know you’re serious and not just playing with the system.

3. Choose a theme

If you want to set a specific mood for your campaign, we have several backgrounds to choose from. Accentuate it by creating a top banner image.

4. Create some NPCs

Characters form the core of every campaign, so take a few minutes to list out the major NPCs in your campaign.

A quick tip: The “+” icon in the top right of every section is how to add a new item, whether it’s a new character or adventure log post, or anything else.

5. Write your first Adventure Log post

The adventure log is where you list the sessions and adventures your party has been on, but for now, we suggest doing a very light “story so far” post. Just give a brief overview of what the party has done up to this point. After each future session, create a new post detailing that night’s adventures.

One final tip: Don’t stress about making your Obsidian Portal campaign look perfect. Instead, just make it work for you and your group. If everyone is having fun, then you’re using Obsidian Portal exactly as it was designed, even if your adventure log isn’t always up to date or your characters don’t all have portrait pictures.

That’s it! The rest is up to your and your players.

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