Saturday, 20 December 2014

The Aielund Saga: Act Three - Part III


Bracksworth Revisited

The gates to the town are ajar and dead militiamen lie on the ground - this doesn't look good.

Buildings are aflame and bodies of both friend and foe litter the ground.

 

Damn those infernal creatures! This was a fine little town once. We must search for survivors! - Nellise.

The town has been pillaged by marauders, four copy-pasta packs of which are still at large. Having made it our business to slay them first, we now turn our attention to the barracks wherein the desperate remaining townsfolk have barricaded themselves.


Huddled inside is the mayor, the Patteel couple, three militia and two commoners.

We learn from the mayor that Hasrinaxx the Druid joined the fray against the marauders and probably escaped to the east after they breached the walls and overwhelmed the town.


Having heard the road north to Culdeny is clear, the grateful townsfolk make a run for it (+1000 EXP).

 

Across from the barracks we see that entry to the Dale's magic shop is blocked by bolts of lightning. Risking electrocution I engage Power Attack to bash through the trapped door.


Relieved to see us, Dale explains that the electrified door is actually an Elder Lightning Elemental summoned by him to help defend the town, but the plan backfired when the elemental raged and trapped him in the shop. Dale now runs to catch up with the rest of the refugees already headed to Culdeny (+500 EXP).


Upon Dale's exit the elemental this time fully manifests. The trio vanquished this foe without too much trouble, thanks to a timely Heal-casting by Nellise (+1632 EXP).


Criosa unlocks Dale's DC 40 chest and inside we find the Four Stars, Circling Heaven +4 katana (+1d6 divine, not usable by Evil), Ring of Elemental Air (Elect resist 25/-, Chain Lightning, Gust of Wind, Improved Invisibility 1/day), spell scrolls (Mordenkainen's Disjunction, Mass Haste, Finger of Death, Premonition), potions and +92 GP.

Dale's diary is found on his desk.


Level Up to 20!

Lilura: Champion of Torm (5) / Paladin (11)/ Fighter (4), +1 WIS
Criosa: Rogue (11) / Wizard (9), +1 DEX, Uncanny Dodge III, Sneak Attack (+6d6)
Nellise: Cleric (18) / Paladin (2), +1 WIS

We now have the option to head south again towards Fort Highmarch, or east into the Southern Foothills. The trio agree that gaining more allies is important, so the latter direction is chosen.


Southern Foothills


The foothills branch off into the Cairnwood Forest in the east and the barb-occupied High Plains in the far south, but first we head just east of our initial position to the graveyard and enter the Tomb of the Exiled Knight - for the second time in our adventure.

The air in this crypt is stale, and dusty cobwebs line the ceiling. - DM.

We hear sinister murmurings in the air...

Sir Augustus Charleston is of course no longer present, but instead we're approached by an ethereal Angel who requests that we cleanse the tomb of a Greater Balor Lord carelessly left behind by Sir Augustus, which has since summoned a second Balor Lord in it's attempt to build an army.


The first Balor Lord (+1156 EXP) is found where the minotaurs dwelt last time, surrounded by several Vrocks (+108 EXP ea).


Another Vrock pack is encountered where we first saw a Balor Lord, a few months ago.


In this corridor we face fire-breathing Greater Hellhounds (+54 EXP ea) which in these numbers are more than just annoying.


Waiting for us at the dead-end is the final encounter with a Succubus-summoning Greater Balor Lord (+1156 EXP) backed up by yet another wretched Vrock pack.


We return to the Angel for +1500 EXP and a choice of reward, any one of these: Angelfyre +5 longsword or scimitar (Holy Avenger, on-hit DC 16 slay Evil) Divine Mace of Disruption +3 (+2d6 divine vs. undead, on-hit DC 14 slay undead), Vestaments of Faith cloak (DR 5/+5), Ring of Elemental Water (Cold res 25/-, Drown, Acid Fog, Ice Storm 1/day).

Yes! Finally a replacement for Lightbringer: the superior Holy Avenger. The Paladin wield, as RPG tradition has it. 

Satisfied with the reward, we take our leave of the stuffy tomb and hike to the center of the foothills where a monk is camped. I presume this guy is more important for monk PCs...

Zachariah mentions Hasrinaxx and Sebastian passed through here en route to the Cairnwood Forest, so we head east following in their footsteps.



Cairnwood Forest


Deer frolic, a grizzly grazes. Music is serene. Goblinoid corpses dirty the grass. The 2D tree branches look awful. Light shafts! Thus was our perception upon arrival in Cairnwood.


A lone druid sits under a great oak. This is Hasrinaxx, he who set up shop in Bracksworth and helped us defend the town against mercs (along with his faithful feline, Sebastian, who is not present). Hazzy explains that the elves have deigned to speak with us (me being Salinder's Champion and all) and that he can transport us to the elven city of Acadia by means of linked oak trees. We agree to meet them, and perhaps while there we can gain the support of our pointy-eared friends against the Ironlord?


Hazzy now casts his tree-linking spell on the oak tree under which we stand.



Acadia


You step into the glowing tree and are whisked away. - DM.

Upon arrival at the corresponding oak tree in Acadia, we're approached and greeted by Leif Aloufin.



Astonishing! An entire city in the middle of my Kingdom, completely hidden... - Criosa.

Such a magnificent city... and yet I sense something dark about this place. - Nellise.


We visit the merchants here, including the smithy, bowyer, priestess and sorcerer.


But only the Tower of High Sorcery stocks what we need, and here Celebrith also offers a weapon enchantment service similar to the one found in Hordes. From her we purchase: Ring of Clear Thought +4 (INT +4), Greater Ring of Wizardry (Bonus wiz spells 4/5/6) and an Amulet of Power (Bonus wiz spells 3/4/5, Bonus feat: Spell Penetration), all for Criosa. I also grab Bag of Holding (3) and the Gem of Seeing (True Sight 1/day).


The final building we enter is the Ruling Chambers to meet with the elven King and Queen, who request I undergo an "extremely challenging" test to prove I'm capable of beating the Ironlord. Basically, kill all the summoned monsters in their test dungeon and close a portal to prove my worthiness; then the elves will consider sending support to Fort Highmarch.

Please speak to my husband, I cannot address you directly. It is our custom, you see. - Queen Amenial Alodel.


We step downstairs into the secret chambers (a copy-pasta of the Well Room in Hordes) where we're again greeted by Leif - who I fail a persuade check on. I like how the mage walks over to activate the portal here, then walks back, as we continue talking with Leif.



The Forgotten City


We enter the cavern and buff ourselves to the max in readiness for an onslaught.


In the northwest several Erinyes zip down from the sky to join two Huge Ash Elementals (+10 EXP ea).

 

Exploring further reveals this "cavern" as actually the remnants of an elven city, very similar in layout to the surface one. Odd...


Just outside the old sorcery tower we encounter two Cornugons, one of which was handily Banished by Nellise (+612 EXP ea).


Lying in wait inside the tower are four Gelugons (+54 EXP ea) who summon harmless Skeleton Chieftains as decoys.

A chest in a small room nearby contains a Greataxe +3 and the Sunblade +3 bastard sword (+2d6 vs. undead, Sunbeam 1/day).


Upstairs two more Cornugons rally around a Greater Cornugon (+1020). An Eldar bookcase is looted here for Legend Lore, Greater Planar Binding and Issac's Greater Missile Storm spell scrolls.



On the opposite side of this floor is a solid steel door (DR 14/-), unlocked by Criosa (DC 40).


Two imposing Mithril Shield Guardians oversee this treasure room (+612 EXP ea).

Dressers: Silk Robe (CHA +1), Robes of Light (AB +5, Imm: Fear/Paralysis, Saves +2, Conc +6, Spellcraft +2, Good/Sorc/Wiz only), Faithblade +4 short sword (+1d6 vs. Evil, Good/Neutral only, Word of Faith 1/day).

Bookcase: Ancient Elf Journal (?) and spell scrolls (Mass Haste, Delayed Blast Fireball, Cloudkill).

A trapped and locked chest (DC 30/30) contains an Amulet of Natural Armor +5, Lesser Ioun Stone: Pale Blue, various precious stones and +4101 GP.


On the top floor the Wight-summoning Pit Fiends are no match for a demon hunter immune to their tricks (+1632 EXP ea).

A room with a pentagram enscribed on the floor contains a chest with random mid-tier loot.


Indeed, you are formidable. But now you face ME! - Devil.

The last room is occupied by a Devil (+612 EXP), similar to the one fought in the library of Fairloch (down-sized Meph), which opens up with Meteor Swarm followed by Fire Storm; and is buffed with Aura of Hellfire. Several Erinyes then arrive to annoy and distract. The trio were worn out and low on buffs by this stage, but Nellise's life-saving Mass Heal supplied us with renewed vigor to help ensure the Devil's eventual demise.


Hovering above and encircling another floor-enscribed pentagram are five light-emitting summoning crystals which when shattered each spawn one Gelugon (+136 EXP ea). The last crystal is shattered causing a central portal to blink into operation, into which the trio then step to be transported back to the secret chamber in Acadia.


We now confront Leif...


... and the King n Queen about using us to do their dirty work, but they placate us by promising to send Leif along with some archers to Fort Highmarch. No quest EXP was yielded for closing the portal or completing the "test", but I guess the kill EXP was more than adequate. Before leaving I head back over to Celebrith to enchant my Holy Avenger with Keen and Electrical +2d6 (-125,000 GP).


We now teleport back to the known Cairnwood and Hasrinaax who congratulates us and then takes his leave, saying he'll meet us in Fort Highmarch in a few days. Instead of just fading out, though, he actually walks back through the forest, step by step, to the area transition point. I watch him leave with admiration, thankful to have this powerful loner as an ally, since day one of my adventure.




High Plains of the Barbs & Fort Highmarch

13 comments:

  1. "Upon Dale's exit the elemental this time fully manifests."

    I am starting to think you're playing an older version -- the elemental should be there from the moment you zone into Dale's home.

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    Replies
    1. Not sure, but they're the ones you uploaded to the new Vault...

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    2. I didn't actually upload those :) Someone else did and I got control of it, I *assumed* it was up to date but perhaps not.

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    3. Are the Act Four files on the New Vault up to date?

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    4. It appears they actually are. Which worries me, because there are apparently more problems than I noticed despite playing it through like 4-5 times each module!

      For future reference, if I'm actively responding elsewhere but don't respond on something like this, assume I forgot to hit the "notify me" thing on the comment box and/or somehow forgot about it. Just remind me where I'm responding!

      Delete
    5. I downloaded Act II from neverwintervault like a week ago, and I can confirm, the "Dale elemental" is there from when you transition and kills the old fool instantly. The party learns about what happened from his journal (and the player knows that even before reading it, from the game's quests journal).

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  2. As an evil assassin, i killed angels and demons, (each angel gives me 1500+ exp plus holy avenger which i gave to Nellise), and the quest i think is glitched, it ask me to return to the angel around the entrance who i already killed LOL

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  3. The lightning barrier on Dale's home made me feel dumb. I tried Dispel Magic, which didn't work, and then tried bashing it, but the lightning damage was too much. Then Criosa cast Knock, which opened it.

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    Replies
    1. That's good to know that Knock works, though it makes no sense that it does.

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    2. well, while bashing it you can see "Triggered a trap", so in a sense, it makes sense… but after reading this, I feel dumb as well, since I went the bruteforce way too.

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  4. ENHANCED CAMO ARMOR! *falls on his knees and thanks the gamemaster, kissing his feet* Thank you, I appreciate the Ranger/druid-specific quest, getting Sebastian back to the druid with Animal Empathy <3

    Camo armor is a leather armor (2/6) with Armor AC+3, Haste, Bonus spell slot Ranger 1,2,3 *and* 4, Hide+8, Move Silently+8. Now to the Elven city, with haste :]

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  5. Just a heads up on the Ancient Elf Journal in the tower, you can read it by clicking on it and using the unique self power, and if you have enough Lore (managed to get it with no lore training but wearing two Lore +5 rings and quaffing a potion of lore) it'll give you a little bit of background on the elf city and clue you in that you're not just being tested.

    I don't recall if there was an exp gain from that, but it is a nice little addition to the quest, I thought.

    Also the monk quest is pretty simple and involves going all the way up through the forest areas to a lake and grabbing a flask full of water, the reward is 2000 exp and some really nice monk gloves (off the top of my head, they're +5 to attack with 1-10 divine damage).

    ReplyDelete

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