“Vanished Lands: A New Dawn” Session 40.49 — The coming of chaos

Fellow role-players, here are my notes for “Vanished Lands” Session 40.49, which was held on Sunday, 9 August 2015:

Long ago in a distant land, spirits and men directly traded bamboo, silk, and steel. Wars to the west, twisted monsters, and power-hungry sorcerers threatened the eastern kingdoms, so the call went out for new heroes of honor and tact….

Player Character Party 40 in Gene D.’s Vanished Lands: A New Dawn” Asian-style telecom campaign, using AD&D1/D&D3.0 Oriental Adventures, Pathfinderand FATE 3e Legends of Anglerre, plus house rules, Skype, and an online dice roller, as of summer 2015:

  • Moon Jung-Mo [Dexter V.H.]-male Nannuattan Ninja (Msamaki; eastern Dark Elf Assassin) who has left the Shadow’s Claw clan and is posing as a River Spirit Folk (eastern Grey Elf) merchant; with a young wyvern Niruth; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Souji Nobuto ‘Sonny’ Yoshimitsu [Beruk A.]-male Shengtese Tian Kensai (eastern human weapon master) from a dishonored house in the Lion Clan, specializing in chain weapons; with talking horse Yip; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Toshiharu ‘Toshi’ Sembutsu [Byron V.O./absent ]-male Shan Sao Wu Jen (eastern Halfling Wizard) with tiger companion Amaya and a destiny; NGc, Lvl. 10
  • Ember Talon [Sara F.]-female Crane Hengeyokai Wu (shapeshifting Druid), actually a young gold dragon banished from the Celestial Court; NGl, Lvl. 10
  • Soske’ Tiatoshe [Geoff C.]-male Shengtese Tian Shukenja (eastern human Cleric), priest and animist from the Phoenix Clan, prophesied to do great things but plagued by family and ancestor spirits; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Saigo Kasugi [Bruce K.]-male Bamboo Spirit Folk Samurai (eastern Sylvan Elf Cavalier) discreetly serving his daimyo; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Tokoro Gawa [Drew S./departed ]-male carp Hengeyokai Hulinyuan (amphibious shapeshifting Ranger) seeking to protect streams; with otter companion Mala; CGn, Lvl. 10

“29 to 30 August 1227 B.C.E.:” The adventuring party was attacked in camp by cute Keukegen, and disguised scout Jung-Mo set an ambush for the chaos dragon by sending a cowardly mayor and his mysterious aide ahead.

At Toshi’s recommendation, Jung-Mo uses his ring of Stone Shape to create a rocky overhang to provide partial cover for some of the team in the Dragon Pass. Jung-Mo then moves to higher ground. Ember shifts into crane form and flies up the mountainside.

Sonny moves from one switchback to another on the narrow road. Soske’ casts Heroes’ Feast for his friends and later takes a position lower on the trail. Saigo hides between two boulders. Toshi hangs back to guard the horses and Niruth, Jung-Mo’s young wyvern.

Kenmotsu Masashi, the onetime mayor of Hei Kuan, and Nadisu Rajendra, his jaguar-headed aide, reappear at the northern stretch of the path, even though Jung-Mo had sent them to report to the dragon several hours ago and miles away.

Peering from a hideout, Sonny sees something other than the Bamboo Spirit Folk (eastern Sylvan Elf) mayor shambling down path. Toshi also disbelieves the illusion and identifies Masashi’s true form as that of a horrific Gibbering Mouther.

Gibbering Mouther
Henchman/victim of the chaos dragon

Samurai Saigo steps out and tries to Charm Rajendra, but the cat-headed Bauh-Yin resists. He says that Masashi’s state is the result of failing the Chole Lung (chaos dragon). The mayor had been involved in a scheme to sacrifice villagers to a demon in a pagoda.

Ninja Jung-Mo sneaks around and shoots poisoned arrows at mushy Masashi. Kensai Sunny charges up the hill toward Kaosu Uirumu’s spies.

Druid Ember lands, Wild Shapes into an elephant, and charges. Shukenja Soske’ casts Ancestral Weapon to get a Dragonbane composite short bow. Wu Jen Toshi begins preparing spells.

Soske’ casts extended Divine Power on himself, and elephantine Ember slams into Rajendra. The Bauh-Yin misses Ember with his claws, and the Gibbering Mouther misses her with multiple toothy maws.

Jung-Mo looses poisoned arrows at the dastardly duo, killing the Gibbering Mouther. Sonny strikes the Bauh-Yin with a flurry of blows from his Dire flail. Saigo slashes at Rajendra with his sword.

Shengtese human Soske’ hits the feline foe and ducks behind cover. Hengeyokai Ember then gores the Bauh-Yin, who leaps onto her back, digs one paw into her elephant hide, and Enlarges himself. Nannuattan Jung-Mo fires more poisoned arrows.

Shengtese human Sonny bats at the cat man, and Bamboo Spirit Folk Saigo eventually kills Rajendra with a thrown dagger. Jung-Mo and Saigo pour oil on Masashi’s remains and burn them.

Soske’ spots a cloud of dust and something huge and winged approaching. He soon realizes that the dust is being created by a skeletal army marching south. Jung-Mo had noticed an old battlefield in his scouting, and Shan Sao Toshi points out that the dragon had probably set Animate Undead as a Contingency spell.

Behind the dust cloud is the chaos dragon, source of many monsters and intrigues that the diplomatic escorts have encountered in the course of their travels. Jung-Mo uses his ring of Stone Shape to dig trenches to slow the army. The Underdark exile also prays to the Lords of Order.

Sonny drinks a potion of Levitation and climbs into position, while Ember shifts back to crane form. Soske’ casts another Ancestral Weapon, this time to obtain an Undead Bane bow. Saigo quaffs a potion of Heroism.

The chaos dragon passes overhead, but the wanderers bravely hold their ground. The beast flies on huge, ragged wings. Kaosu Uirumu has tentacles instead of forelegs, and his irregular black scales are inscribed with red, glowing runes.

The Chole Lung
Kaosu Uirumu

The Chole Lung breathes noxious gas at Sonny and Saigo, who manage to cling to their sanity. The Undead army begins filling in Jung-Mo’s first ditch with bodies of skeletal warriors. Ember Wild Shapes into a swift hawk and outmaneuvers the dragon.

Soske’ draws his magical bow and releases a volley, as Sonny uses his Levitationto jump closer. Saigo drinks a potion of Flight, while Jung-Mo hides in shadows. The dragon tries to crush Soske’ with its tentacles.

Ember casts Holy Smite and flies toward the chaos drake, who is the antithesis of her true form. Soske’ heals himself and quickly casts Divine Wind, which slows the soldiers and forces the dragon to land.

Sonny misses Kaosu Uirumu with his whip, but Saigo strikes with his Outsider Bane sword. Jung-Mo’s arrows get caught up in Soske’s wind, so he uses the ring of Stone Shape to briefly trap one of the dragon’s hind legs.

The nightmarish Chole Lung breaks free and knocks Ember out of the air with a wing buffet. It also swings its massive tail at Soske’ and claws at Saigo. Shapechanger Ember readies Call Lightning, as pious Soske’ shoots arrows at short range.

Wary Sonny downs a potion of Haste, and armored Saigo draws blood with hisnodachi (great sword). Stealthy Jung-Mo moves through shadows, while Toshi and tiger Amaya face the first wave of Undead.

The chaos dragon breathes at Jung-Mo and Saigo and flaps its wings at Soske’ and Ember, but he misses all of them. Kaosu Uirumu then slaps Sonny with his tail, bites Saigo, and summons an imposing-looking woman.

Lady Shiori Heikkaki changes her appearance and cuts Jung-Mo with a naginata (glaive). Ember tries to cast Baleful Polymorph, but the dragon resists. Soske’ and Toshi identify the woman as a diabolical Shiko Me.

Sonny switches to his Vorpal whip, and Saigo switches blades. Jung-Mo swings hisninja-to (short sword) at Lady Shiori but misses.

The Chole Lung slams Saigo with his tentacles, bites Soske’, and tries to buffet Sonny away. The cocky dragon also slaps Ember with his tail and Dispels Soske’s Divine Wind.

The Undead soldiers begin filling in Jung-Mo’s second trench. Ember says a quick prayer beseeching the Celestial Court to allow her to return to her true draconic form. Sonny swings his enchanted whip and beheads the chaos dragon!

I look forward to concluding the “New Dawntelecom campaign, but because of absences, we’ll be revisiting the “Star Trek: Restorationscenario in the next few weekends.

I enjoyed “Star Wars: Dark Timesat “JasonCon 2015,” and I look forward to seeing some of you at face-to-face D&D5e nautical sessions, not to mention our upcoming higher-level party….

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“Vanished Lands: A New Dawn” Session 40.48 — Eyes in the Dragon Pass

Fellow role-players, here are my notes for “Vanished Lands” Session 40.48, which was held on Sunday, 2 August 2015:

Long ago in a distant land, spirits and men directly traded bamboo, silk, and steel. Wars to the west, twisted monsters, and power-hungry sorcerers threatened the eastern kingdoms, so the call went out for new heroes of honor and tact….

Player Character Party 40 in Gene D.’s Vanished Lands: A New Dawn” Asian-style telecom campaign, using AD&D1/D&D3.0 Oriental Adventures, Pathfinderand FATE 3e Legends of Anglerre, plus house rules, Skype, and an online dice roller, as of summer 2015:

  • Moon Jung-Mo [Dexter V.H.]-male Nannuattan Ninja (Msamaki; eastern Dark Elf Assassin) who has left the Shadow’s Claw clan and is posing as a River Spirit Folk (eastern Grey Elf) merchant; with a young wyvern Niruth; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Souji Nobuto ‘Sonny’ Yoshimitsu [Beruk A.]-male Shengtese Tian Kensai (eastern human weapon master) from a dishonored house in the Lion Clan, specializing in chain weapons; with talking horse Yip; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Toshiharu ‘Toshi’ Sembutsu [Byron V.O.]-male Shan Sao Wu Jen (eastern Halfling Wizard) with tiger companion Amaya and a destiny; NGc, Lvl. 10
  • Ember Talon [Sara F.]-female Crane Hengeyokai Wu (shapeshifting Druid), actually a young gold dragon banished from the Celestial Court; NGl, Lvl. 10
  • Soske’ Tiatoshe [Geoff C.]-male Shengtese Tian Shukenja (eastern human Cleric), priest and animist from the Phoenix Clan, prophesied to do great things but plagued by family and ancestor spirits; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Saigo Kasugi [Bruce K.]-male Bamboo Spirit Folk Samurai (eastern Sylvan Elf Cavalier) discreetly serving his daimyo; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Tokoro Gawa [Drew S./departed]-male carp Hengeyokai Hulinyuan (amphibious shapeshifting Ranger) seeking to protect streams; with otter companion Mala; CGn, Lvl. 10

“26 to 28 August 1227 B.C.E.:” While hiking in the Bamor Mountains and hunting a chaos dragon, the onetime diplomatic escorts were attacked by a wyvern-riding Oni. They defeated the Earth Yai and learned more about their quarry.

The adventuring party rests in a winding canyon. Jung-Mo prepares to scout ahead in disguise as the Oni Gu Hyong-Kim, with Niruth enlarged by an Animal Growth spell to appear as adult wyvern Gwang Mi-Ja.

However, Soske’ points out that Wind Walk would enable him or Saigo to travel more easily. Jung-Mo and Ember are glad to not endanger the young wyvern, and the Nannuattan Ninja flies off.

Sonny and Saigo take first watch, while Toshi, Ember, and Soske’ recuperate from recent battles in camp. Jung-Mo flies north over an old battlefield, with bits of armor poking out of the snow.

Wu Jen Toshi swaps out Fireball and Mass Snake’s Swiftness for Suspended Silenceon some shurikens (throwing stars). As night falls, Saigo and Sonny spot six furry creatures popping up from the rocks.

Jung-Mo recognizes the panther-headed aide to Kenmotsu Masashi, the mayor of Hei Kuan who fled after a plot to sacrifice villagers to a demonic Yao-Mor was revealed. Still in disguise as the Oni, Jung-Mo lands and asks the Bauh-Yin about Masashi’s whereabouts.

Bauh-Yin
Jaguar-headed agent of chaos

Nadisu Rajendra says that he is tired of babysitting the Bamboo Spirit Folk, but he challenges “Gu Hyong-Kim’s” tale of a close encounter with outlanders (Jung-Mo’s team). Feline Rajendra eventually agrees to report to Kaosu Uirumu. Jung-Mo hopes to lure the chaos dragon into an ambush away from its lair.

Back at camp, the cute critters begin attacking the horses, plunging hollow, needle-like tongues into the animals. Saigo initially plays dead while Sonny wakes the rest of the party.

Soul sucking monster
Deceptively cute Keukegen

Kensai Sonny smashes the one attacking his horse Yip, and Samurai Saigo saves his own steed. Toshi kills another with a shuriken, but Soske’ only grazes one with an arrow. The Shukenja identifies the attackers as Keukegen.

Ember keeps the panicked mounts from running away, while one Keukegen latches onto Saigo’s face, draining him of blood and spirit. Sonny fails to rip the furry facehugger off the Bamboo Spirit Folk.

Soske’ dodges a soul sucker, and Saigo manages to slice the Keukegen off with his sword. Toshi finishes off the remaining vermin with shurikens. Soske’ also casts Cure Disease on Saigo to keep him from turning into an Undead, and Druid Ember heals the horses.

Out in the Dragon Pass, Jung-Mo stealthily follows Rajendra as he acrobatically moves through the rough mountainous terrain. The flying Ninja’s attention is diverted by a swarm of snakes or worms headed toward the camp. He descends for a better view and is disgusted by a writhing mass of eyes on crawling stalks.

One-eyed worm
Eyestalk monster

Jung-Mo backtracks to where Najendra told him that Masashi was hiding. Again posing as the Oni, he interrogates the cowardly mayor and tosses a poison dart at him as a warning. Jung-Mo then sends Masashi after the panther man and toward the eye stalks before returning to his companions.

Sonny recommends that those camped under an outcropping off the main trail stay out of sight. The eyes pass the camp, and Toshi and Soske’ believe that they are some sort of spell cast by the Chole Lung (chaos dragon) rather than a particular type of monster. The group readies for its final confrontation….

We’ll see whether we’ll have quorum in the next few weekends. If not, I can continue the “Star Trek: Restorationscenario, and we should wrap up the “New Dawn” campaign in early September.

In the meantime, don’t forget to work on your higher-level D&D5e characters, and I’ll see some of you at “JasonCon 2015” or upcoming face-to-face nautical games!

“Vanished Lands: A New Dawn” Session 40.47 — Wyvern of the wastes

Fellow role-players, here are my notes for “Vanished Lands” Session 40.47, which was held on Sunday, 26 July 2015:

Long ago in a distant land, spirits and men directly traded bamboo, silk, and steel. Wars to the west, twisted monsters, and power-hungry sorcerers threatened the eastern kingdoms, so the call went out for new heroes of honor and tact….

Player Character Party 40 in Gene D.’s Vanished Lands: A New Dawn” Asian-style telecom campaign, using AD&D1/D&D3.0 Oriental Adventures, Pathfinderand FATE 3e Legends of Anglerre, plus house rules, Skype, and an online dice roller, as of summer 2015:

  • Moon Jung-Mo [Dexter V.H.]-male Nannuattan Ninja (Msamaki; eastern Dark Elf Assassin) who has left the Shadow’s Claw clan and is posing as a River Spirit Folk (eastern Grey Elf) merchant; with a young wyvern Niruth; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Souji Nobuto ‘Sonny’ Yoshimitsu [Beruk A.]-male Shengtese Tian Kensai (eastern human weapon master) from a dishonored house in the Lion Clan, specializing in chain weapons; with talking horse Yip; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Toshiharu ‘Toshi’ Sembutsu [Byron V.O.]-male Shan Sao Wu Jen (eastern Halfling Wizard) with tiger companion Amaya and a destiny; NGc, Lvl. 10
  • Ember Talon [Sara F.]-female Crane Hengeyokai Wu (shapeshifting Druid), actually a young gold dragon banished from the Celestial Court; NGl, Lvl. 10
  • Soske’ Tiatoshe [Geoff C.]-male Shengtese Tian Shukenja (eastern human Cleric), priest and animist from the Phoenix Clan, prophesied to do great things but plagued by family and ancestor spirits; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Saigo Kasugi [Bruce K.]-male Bamboo Spirit Folk Samurai (eastern Sylvan Elf Cavalier) discreetly serving his daimyo; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Tokoro Gawa [Drew S./departed]-male carp Hengeyokai Hulinyuan (amphibious shapeshifting Ranger) seeking to protect streams; with otter companion Mala; CGn, Lvl. 10

“22 to 25 August 1227 B.C.E.:” The adventuring party defeated a demon at a ruined pagoda, and it learned from a geisha about more lieutenants of the chaos dragon it has been hunting. A Kitsune assassin confessed to killing a local priestess as ordered by Ninja Desc Soo-Ann, whom the team found and slayed.

The onetime diplomatic escorts continue hiking north into the Bamor Mountains. Jung-Mo scouts ahead, and Saigo rides his steed next. Sonny talks with his horse Yip and wonders if tribute from the dragon’s followers took this trail.

Sonny also notes that Kenmotsu Masashi, the mayor of Hei Kuan, may have fled in this direction after the scheme to sacrifice villagers to the Yao-Mor (demon) was revealed. There is no initial sign of the Bamboo Spirit Folk (eastern Sylvan Elf) and his panther-headed aide.

Toshi rides tiger Amaya and tells his companions of recent spells — a scroll of Permanancy for See Invisible for himself and a Contingency of turning Invisible if he is seriously wounded.

Ember watches Niruth, Jung-Mo’s young wyvern. Although the Druid shares some dragon lore, she doesn’t know a lot about a Chole Lung (chaos dragon). Soske’ and Toshi study maps of the Dragon Pass.

Saigo sees a shadow fall across the rocky path between Jung-Mo and him. The Samurai signals the team, which slows. Ember and Soske’ spot a full-grown wyvern with a humanoid rider circling around.

Wyvern rider
Charging on a wyvern

The Oni dismounts, hovers, and casts Rock to Mud, slowing those on the ground. The wyvern dives as Ember shifts to crane form. Wu Jen Toshi casts Fly on Saigo, while Amaya climbs out of the mud.

Samurai Saigo looses an arrow before switching to his sword in midair. Meanwhile, Invisible Ninja Jung-Mo maneuvers to higher ground. Shukenja Soske’ casts Protection From Evil on himself and Ember.

Kensai Sonny jumps clear of his horse and the muddy trail. The Oni, Gu Hyong-Kim, levitates rocks and hurls them at Toshi and Soske’. Saigo dodges the lightning breath of wyvern Gwang Mi-Ja.

Ember casts Silence at the Ogre Mage, who resists. The Oni is less successful against Toshi’s Lightning Arc and Sound Lance. Saigo repeatedly slashes at Gu Hyong-Kim, as Jung-Mo tosses poisoned darts. Soske’ and Sonny shoot more arrows at the Earth Yai.

Gu Hyong-Kim pushes Saigo away with Repel Metal and conjures stone spikes against Toshi. Gwang Mi-Ja attacks Saigo.

Hengeyokai Ember casts Protection From Lightning on Saigo, closes while Wild Shaped as a falcon, and starts a Summon Storm ritual. Shan Sao Toshi casts maximized Magic Missiles at the Oni.

Nannuattan Jung-Mo poisons the wyvern, paralyzing it and forcing it to crash. Shengtese human Soske’s Flame Strike injures the Oni, whom Spirit Folk Saigo then subdues. Shengtese Sonny verifies that the wyvern is dead.

Saigo secures prisoner Gu Hyong-Kim, and Jung-Mo and Sonny strip the Oni and wyvern of the following gear:

  • great club (masterwork Kanabo) 2d8 — Sonny holding for party
  • bracers of Armor + 2 — Ember claims
  • 200 tael (100 gold pieces) — party fund
  • leather wyvern saddle — Jung-Mo claims
  • ring of Regeneration (+ 1 HP/rd) — Saigo claims

In addition, Saigo gives Jung-Mo hollow-point arrows, Sonny a potion of Levitation, and Ember an eggshell grenade. The Samurai threatens Gu Hyong-Kim, who tries to Meld Into Stone to escape.

However, quick-thinking Jung-Mo uses his ring of Stone Shape to keep the Oni from escaping. Sonny hogties the Earth Yai, who is confident that his master Kaosu Uirumu will prevail. As prophesied, Toshi executes the prisoner.

The wanderers venture deeper into the dragon’s territory, as the landscape grows twisted around them. They consider sending Jung-Mo in disguise as Gu Hyong-Kim to lure the dragon from his lair.

Dragon Pass
Hiking through the northeastern Bamor Mountains

Sonny likes the idea of taking on the chaos dragon away from its stronghold and remaining minions, and Toshi offers to cast Animal Growth so that Niruth can impersonate Gwang Mi-Ja.

Ember isn’t happy about fighting a fellow dragon, but she notes that Kaosu Uirumu most likely comes from the Abyss rather than the Celestial Court.

Soske’ is quiet as he contemplates the possible end of his quest, while Saigo is eager to avenge his grandfather, who was ambushed and captured for a time in the Dragon Pass….

It was good to see everyone online, and I’m glad that Skype and your tactics worked well. Don’t forget to work on your characters for our upcoming higher-level D&D5e campaign!

I’ll try to post an update for our latest face-to-face nautical session soon, and I also look forward to the Boston Comic Con and “Star Wars: Dark Timesat “JasonCon 2015!”

“Vanished Lands: A New Dawn” Session 40.46 — Incense and blood

Fellow role-players, here are my notes for “Vanished Lands” Session 40.46, which was held on Sunday, 5 July 2015:

Long ago in a distant land, spirits and men directly traded bamboo, silk, and steel. Wars to the west, twisted monsters, and power-hungry sorcerers threatened the eastern kingdoms, so the call went out for new heroes of honor and tact….

Player Character Party 40 in Gene D.’s Vanished Lands: A New Dawn” Asian-style telecom campaign, using AD&D1/D&D3.0 Oriental Adventures, Pathfinderand FATE 3e Legends of Anglerre, plus house rules and an online dice roller, as of summer 2015:

  • Moon Jung-Mo [Dexter V.H.]-male Nannuattan Ninja (Msamaki; eastern Dark Elf Assassin) who has left the Shadow’s Claw clan and is posing as a River Spirit Folk (eastern Grey Elf) merchant; with a young wyvern Niruth; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Souji Nobuto ‘Sonny’ Yoshimitsu [Beruk A.]-male Shengtese Tian Kensai (eastern human weapon master) from a dishonored house in the Lion Clan, specializing in chain weapons; with talking horse Yip; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Toshiharu ‘Toshi’ Sembutsu [Byron V.O.]-male Shan Sao Wu Jen (eastern Halfling Wizard) with tiger companion Amaya and a destiny; NGc, Lvl. 10
  • Ember Talon [Sara F.]-female Crane Hengeyokai Wu (shapeshifting Druid), actually a young gold dragon banished from the Celestial Court; NGl, Lvl. 10
  • Soske’ Tiatoshe [Geoff C./absent]-male Shengtese Tian Shukenja (eastern human Cleric), priest and animist from the Phoenix Clan, prophesied to do great things but plagued by family and ancestor spirits; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Saigo Kasugi [Bruce K.]-male Bamboo Spirit Folk Samurai (eastern Sylvan Elf Cavalier) discreetly serving his daimyo; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Tokoro Gawa [Drew S./departed]-male carp Hengeyokai Hulinyuan (amphibious shapeshifting Ranger) seeking to protect streams; with otter companion Mala; CGn, Lvl. 10

“21 August 1227 B.C.E.:” At Hei Kuan, the wanderers prevented Spirit Folk and Shan Sao villagers from unwittingly becoming sacrifices. They fought six reptilian Zukojin and a large demon in a pagoda.

Sonny gets Saigo, who was escorting people back to the village. The Samurai politely bows to the demonic Yao-Mor, which swings at him with hooked swords. Saigo then readies a potion of Cure Serious Wounds. Ember casts Protection From Fire on Saigo, while Jung-Mo sneaks around the burning pagoda.

Toshi and Soske’ fall back, and Sonny lashes at the three-eyed demon with his Vorpal whip. Lung Jua (“Claw of the Dragon”) taunts Saigo, who initially misses with “Thundering Blade,” an enchanted katana (+3 Outsider Bane long sword).

Druid Ember casts Lightning, and Jung-Mo pelts the four-armed Yao-Mor with arrows. Soske’ heals himself. Saigo slashes at Lung Jua, and his sword resists the monster’s Rust spell.

Greater Oni
Yao-Mor

In a step toward fulfilling his prophesied destiny, Wu Jen Toshi turns the greater Oni into a nasty puddle with Sound Lance. Jung-Mo and Kensai Sonny carefully place the “Dragon Talons,” Lung Jua’s two swords, on Toshi’s floating disc.

Soske’s Detect Curse doesn’t register the hooked blades (1d10 + 2), but the Shukenja does sense something evil shifting within them. Toshi later determines that they can each create copies that steal life to heal the wielder.

Jung-Mo also finds and claims a ring of Stone Shape with eight charges from one of the Zukojin. Soske’ heals his companions. The warriors return to Hei Kuan, the last outpost before the Dragon Pass in the eastern Bamor Mountains, but they are unable to find mayor Kenmotsu Masashi.

Saigo goes to the House of the Glowing Carp to ask Miyamoto Narumi about the duplicitous mayor’s whereabouts. The River Spirit Folk geisha (eastern Grey Elf courtesan) says that the Bamboo Spirit Folk (eastern Sylvan Elf) and his panther-headed lieutenant fled when villagers came back from the shrine and the Yao-Mor.

Miyamoto admits that she has heard of Gu Kyong Kim, another Oni (Ogre Mage), and Gwang Mi-Ja, a wyvern, as other servants of the chaos dragon. She pauses to write the dragon’s name on a silk scroll but gasps for air when she is poisoned by the ink.

Ember quickly Neutralizes Poison, and Miyamoto writes the names of Desc Soo-Ann and Kaosu Uirumu. Jung-Mo recognizes Desc Soo-Ann, or Desan, as a fellow Nannuattan Ninja encountered a few times in his travels. He says that Desan probably planted the poison and may still be lurking nearby.

Kaosu Uirumu is the Chole Lung, or chaos dragon, that Shengtese human Soske’ and company have been hunting for the Zedu kingdom in return for the promise of land and titles. Bamboo Spirit Folk Saigo thanks Miyamoto for her help.

The group goes to the house of Shiomi Romi, a Korobokuru (eastern Dwarf) alchemist and Shukenja of the Path of Order. On the way, crane Hengeyokai Ember recognizes Endo Mayumi, a Kitsune (fox Hengeyokai). The shapeshifter says that she is leaving town.

Saigo demands a look at Mayumi’s bags, but she is evasive and tosses them past him. The Kitsune tries to shift into vulpine form, but Shengtese human Sonny trips her with a flail. Saigo punches Mayumi, and Ember Wild Shapes into a wolf to subdue her.

Toshi notices that one of the woman’s bags is bleeding, so the Shan Sao opens it. He finds the head of Shiomi Romi and angrily threatens Mayumi with a Lightning Bolt until Jung-Mo and Ember can tie her up. Soske’ keeps watch as the people of Hei Kuan are confused in the wake of the Reaping Festival.

Mayumi admits killing the priestess on Desan’s orders. Jung-Mo beheads the assassin. In the other sack, the adventuring party finds 1,200 tael (600 gold pieces), and Saigo claims 1,000 (500 g.p.) of it.

Sonny takes a potion of Haste, and Toshi gets a scroll of Permancency. At Shiomi Romi’s temple, Jung-Mo finds a shuriken, and Soske’ gets a scroll of Remove Blindness. They also find trip wires left by Desan.

Jung-Mo narrowly dodges a falling axe. After some encouragement by Toshi and Ember, the scout disables poisoned darts and a trap that would crack the altar.

Meanwhile, Sonny and Saigo bury the bodies in the adjacent graveyard. They hear a tree branch creak beneath an unseen spy’s weight. Saigo drinks a potion of Flying and attacks, and Sonny discreetly climbs the tree.

Desan drops his Invisibility by tossing a powder grenade at Saigo and draws hisninja-to (short sword). Hearing a commotion outside, Toshi shifts into bird form, and Jung-Mo and Ember follow.

Ninja gear
Ninja and gear

Jung-Mo drops his fellow Ninja with his own poisoned darts. He retrieves the (+ 3) ninja-to, studded leather armor (+ 2), a few eggshell grenades, and a masterwork disguise kit.

Sonny claims a signet ring stolen from one of Tong Sheng’s rulers, and Saigo takes a ring from the Zedu kingdom. Toshi studies a map of the dragon’s lair….

Geoff, I’m sorry that we missed you during our latest Google+ hangout! What does everyone think: Should we switch back to Skype?

Remember that we won’t be meeting virtually again until July 26, but in the meantime, I hope that you’re able to update your characters and finish creating or revising those for our upcoming D&D5e telecom game! -Gene

“Vanished Lands: A New Dawn” Session 41.45 — Pagoda sombrero

Fellow role-players, here are my notes for “Vanished Lands” Session 40.45, which was held on Sunday, 28 June 2015:

Long ago in a distant land, spirits and men directly traded bamboo, silk, and steel. Wars to the west, twisted monsters, and power-hungry sorcerers threatened the eastern kingdoms, so the call went out for new heroes of honor and tact….

Player Character Party 40 in Gene D.’s Vanished Lands: A New Dawn” Asian-style telecom campaign, using AD&D1/D&D3.0 Oriental Adventures, Pathfinderand FATE 3e Legends of Anglerre, plus house rules, Skype, and an online dice roller, as of summer 2015:

  • Moon Jung-Mo [Dexter V.H.]-male Nannuattan Ninja (Msamaki; eastern Dark Elf Assassin) who has left the Shadow’s Claw clan and is posing as a River Spirit Folk (eastern Grey Elf) merchant; with a young wyvern Niruth; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Souji Nobuto ‘Sonny’ Yoshimitsu [Beruk A.]-male Shengtese Tian Kensai (eastern human weapon master) from a dishonored house in the Lion Clan, specializing in chain weapons; with talking horse Yip; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Toshiharu ‘Toshi’ Sembutsu [Byron V.O.]-male Shan Sao Wu Jen (eastern Halfling Wizard) with tiger companion Amaya and a destiny; NGc, Lvl. 10
  • Ember Talon [Sara F.]-female Crane Hengeyokai Wu (shapeshifting Druid), actually a young gold dragon banished from the Celestial Court; NGl, Lvl. 10
  • Soske’ Tiatoshe [Geoff C.]-male Shengtese Tian Shukenja (eastern human Cleric), priest and animist from the Phoenix Clan, prophesied to do great things but plagued by family and ancestor spirits; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Saigo Kasugi [Bruce K./absent]-male Bamboo Spirit Folk Samurai (eastern Sylvan Elf Cavalier) discreetly serving his daimyo; LNg, Lvl. 10
  • Tokoro Gawa [Drew S./departed]-male carp Hengeyokai Hulinyuan (amphibious shapeshifting Ranger) seeking to protect streams; with otter companion Mala; CGn, Lvl. 10

“21 August 1227 B.C.E.:” The adventuring party arrived at Hei Kuan just in time for the Karitori Matsuri, or “Reaping Festival.” The group’s search for followers of a chaos dragon led to reptilian Zukojin and a three-eyed, four-armed creature outside the village.

Jung-Mo throws whippets (incendiary boomerangs) to start a fire to help screen the retreating peasants from the scaly folk. The civilians had been walking in an entranced procession toward a lit pagoda containing the large monster. Saigo shepherds the Spirit Folk and Shan Sao back to town.

Sonny, who had spotted a member of the rival Crane Clan, moves through the crowd after seeing Jung-Mo’s signal flare. Soske’ joins him. Toshi and Ember, who were following a Kitsune (fox woman), change into bird form and fly out to investigate.

Jung-Mo creeps through the nighttime darkness as the six Zukojin approach the path leading from Hei Kuan to the pagoda. Toshi and Ember land nearby and shift back to Halfling and Hengeyokai form, respectively, to cast spells.

Reptilian miner
Zukojin

Sonny and Soske’ run to catch up, passing Samurai Saigo and those returning to the walled village. Ninja Jung-Mo fires arrows at two of the humanoids, and one succumbs to his knockout poison.

Druid Ember casts Obscurement, creating more mist to help the stragglers escape the Zukojin. Wu Jen Toshi looses a volley of shuriken-shaped Magic Missiles at the lizard-kin, who attack him and Ember.

Shukenja Soske’ shoots arrows, and Kensai Sonny continues to close in. Jung-Mo knocks out another Zukojin and runs after two retreating toward the pagoda. Ember Wild Shapes into a black panther and pounces on one of her foes.

Asian gazebo
Pagoda

Toshi finishes off that opponent with more Magic Missiles, and he kills the three remaining Zukojin with Fiery Dragon. Jung-Mo reaches the shrine and gets a better look at the demon. He falls back to report to his companions.

Toshi recognizes the description of a Yau-Mor named Lung Jua, or “Claw of the Dragon,” no doubt a reference to the chaos dragon they’re hunting. The Shan Sao Wizard is eager to fulfill his destiny and slay a major Oni (Ogre Mage).

Soske’ suspects that the local authorities have been corrupted or misled into sending villagers as sacrifices to the pagoda under the pretense of a harvest festival.

Nannuattan Jung-Mo and Toshi (back in bird form as a black baza) stealthily maneuver to the rear of the pagoda. Ember casts Warp Wood on the roof, causing it to collapse. The Yao-Mor belches flame and casts Power Word: Blind, but the would-be heroes resist.

Soske’ casts Dispel Evil, as fellow Shengtese human Sonny hits the demon with his Vorpal whip. Jung-Mo looses magical arrows, a few of which hit, and Ember casts Heat Metal on the cruelly hooked blades in two of Lung Jua’s hands.

Toshi casts Cone of Cold and narrowly evades the demon’s Baleful Polymorph. The Yao-Mor swings its swords at Soske, who ducks beyond the monster after missing it. Sonny realizes that his whip isn’t enough to affect the massive beast, so he goes to get Saigo for backup.

Jung-Mo dodges burning debris, and Ember slows Lung Jua with Rock to Mud on the stone steps. Toshi’s Cold Ball helps, but the spell unfortunately catches Soske’ in its blast. The Yao-Mor can’t reach Soske’, but it does hit Toshi.

Soske’ backs up and casts Divine Power on himself, and Ember hits with Call Lightning. Toshi joins in with another Cone of Cold, as the team presses its fight with the demon….

Bruce, we missed “Saigo” this past week! I look forward to our last “New Dawn” sessions, as well as to more of the new D&D5e “Vanished Lands” face-to-face teamand Jason’s “Star Wars: Dark Timesgame. In the meantime, have a happy Independence Day!