Author Topic: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.  (Read 15061 times)

noofy

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Re: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.
« Reply #15 on: February 12, 2012, 11:58:13 PM »
So EPIC!!!
Doug that is pure brillance. There is so much in there that I want to applaud, but the few that stand out:
* The naming chamber calling them strangers based on the idea of their ' real names' being secret and something to be revealed later (like Shank's death move).
* The Fire-flies. I've run this adventure twice and each time the adventurers avoided the flies, so good to see them come into their own. I love the vision of a burnt muddy Shanks too :)
* The subtle hints you drop about the situation at large, but never railroading the players to your 'vision'. You are just playing to see what happens.
* The parliment debating the question 'What do we do now?' Such a good opportunity for shared authorship between players and GM, so cool!
* Grundloch being muscly. Hell yeah.

What Xp did you go with? The new Bonds / Alignment / end of session system? Are you leveling up at Level+7?

Once again, thanks so much for posting Doug. This truly highlights JUST how much DW lets us connect with the old skool reminiscence and indie story game mechanics. Whenever I play DW, it feels like the old Moldvay experience. But when I play Moldvay / OD&D now, it is so filtered by later incarnations (4e especially) and their iterations on game play that I can't seem to grasp that 'wonder and imagination' back and would rather be playing DW instead.

DW, for some unknown reason taps straight back into that childhood reverie and allows us to tell (for me) enfettered stories of  improvised High Adventure, filled with all the Basic D&D tropes and none of the crunchy / tactical miscellany that came with AD&D/2e/3e/4e.

Anarchangel

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Re: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.
« Reply #16 on: February 13, 2012, 12:25:29 AM »
Interestingly, one of the players from the game I ran a couple of days ago commented that it was more like Advanced Fighting Fantasy than D&D. AFF is my nostalgia game that I ran throughout my teenaged years, so I think it's fair to say that DW lets you channel your old school fantasy nostalgia regardless of what system it was!

Doug Hare

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Re: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.
« Reply #17 on: February 13, 2012, 07:45:41 PM »
Noofy - thus far we've had one session with highlighted stats and one session with bonds and the End of Session questions. I think the guys are about ready to level up now, they've got a handle on how things work, and have filled their character's shoes, so it's time they got to differentiate themselves a little more and to further invest in their characters.

I think you're giving me more credit than I deserve, though. The reason why the magic in the hall refers to them as "strangers" is because they've not come through the main doors. If they had, it would have cried out "ANNOUNCE YOURSELVES, VISITORS TO THE HALL OF THE IDOL!", and then gone with whatever they said their names were. At the moment it's just using the default.

Plus, the mud and slime and insect vomit on Shanks' armour is going to dry up soon, and flake off, and only the glitter of gold dust will be left. I wonder, oh, I wonder what they'll do about that?

Even more plus - I'm planning on parcelling out information about the world bit by bit, except if it's an enormous assumption or something the players would be aware of. Case in point: I've had an idea that elves and dwarves are in fact two halves of the same dimorphic species - elves live above ground for the most, like sunlight and work well in wood and with plants; dwarves live below ground for the most part, can function without sunlight, and work well with metal and stone.

This would mean that there are no half elves, so I'd need to work around the background option move that I think the Bard, could be the Ranger has, but I'd just call it Friend to All Peoples or something of that nature, and have it reflect training or aptitude instead of mixed blood.

Furthermore, it means that both elves and dwarves can define themselves for how long it's been since their family/bloodline had one of the other born into it. And elves and dwarves can meet up every so often to swap over babies born of the wrong species.

But you can see why I'd want the players to sign off on that before enacting it?

noofy

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Re: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.
« Reply #18 on: February 14, 2012, 03:10:55 AM »
Oh yeah, totally! But remember, it ain't in the game until its in the game. To do it do it right? So if your ranger really wants Half-elven / dwarven blood, rather than just saying 'no', bring up your idea and talk it through. You'll have to ask lots of questions so that you can co-author that it as a 'special' maybe even arcane and mystical abberation. Sure you can be Half-elven, or half dwaven or half elf/dwarf! Humans may not give a damn, but you are sure as hell going to be treated as a mutant by both dwarves and elves alike. Sounds like an awesome story in the making to me.

Doug Hare

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Re: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.
« Reply #19 on: February 27, 2012, 05:17:57 PM »
After skipping a week, we resumed play last Thursday. Fortified with coffee and chocolate biscuits, I recapped events thus far...

I also decided to let the chaps level up. I'm confused about which exp system is currently current, so I figure we can get it out of the way now. We roll for HP, and both players only manage to get an extra Base HP. Keith chooses Merciless for Amdor's new Move, already thinking of how much fun it will be combined with the "deal your level in damage" option from Defend. Dave makes Shanks Quick on the Draw. We continue!

Faced with an opportunity to deal with the sorceror Grundloch once and for all, and, even though he suspects a trap of some kind, Shanks moves stealthily forward to plunge his rapier into the robed man's vitals.

A decent Backstabbery roll, and his weapon slides into the figure like a needle into clay...which is almost exactly what happens. The simulacrum (because that's what it is), collapses with a noise like breaking ice, and for a second, a silver cord hangs suspended in the air, leading out of the library cavern the way the guys came in. A clamouring cacophonous noise like bells ringing speeds away into the distance, leaving Amdor and Shanks with a ringing in their ears and a seemingly empty library in front of them.

Quietly, slowly, they move up through the library. Most of the books and scrolls are decayed and near useless, even if these two were avid readers, which they're really not.

A noise in front of them startles them both, and they split up and hide.

(I decided it might be more fun to have Cassius here instead of in the cavern with Grundloch and the idol, and so, here he is).

A lantern springs to life in front of them, and in the glow is revealed a large porcine man, flinging a leather jerkin over his ample body, and hefting a large mattock in both hands. He moves forward to the next lantern and lights it, too. Amdor and Shanks realise their hiding places are getting less safe, but stay put for the moment. Cassius moves up the library, doesn't notice them, and investigates the fallen simulacrum. He can't hear any noises from up the corridor to the Parliament Room, and so concludes that the intruder must still be in the library. He turns round and chuckles "Nowhere to run now, little rats..."

Meanwhile, Shanks has shuffled over the bookcases to where the big man was asleep, and, after a quick and unsuccessful search of the baggage and gear there for a set of robes, improvises hastily with a blanket, folding it over himself to suggest robes in the dim light. Keith Discerns Realities and notices that Cassius, having got up recently, is barefoot, and hatches his own plan - he finds something breakable in the gear - the bottle that Cassius had half-emptied just before going to sleep. If he'd sniffed it, he'd have realised that Cassius had in fact fully emptied in and then half-refilled it during the night, but it's probably for the best that he doesn't know. Cassius lumbers slightly closer, his attention drawn by the faint disturbances the PCs are causing.

"Ah, there you are!" says Shanks, in his best EEvil Wizard voice.

"Huh?" says Cassius, confused.

"It is I, Grundloch, your master!" continues Shanks. "Put down that hammer and bring me my spell book!"

Dave wonders if this is a Parley, but then concludes he doesn't really have leverage over Cassius, and settles for a Defy Danger roll based on Cha. This is not his best stat, but even if he'd been as smooth as George Clooney, his dice roll would still have let him down.

"Really?", muses Cassius, and accusingly demands. "What's my name?". His suspicions confirmed, the big man comes forward, mattock gripped in two hands, ready to break things.

 Shanks realises the game is up, and, more importantly, so does Amdor who hurls the bottle to smash on the floor in between himself and Cassius, hoping to trick the larger man into stepping onto some broken glass.

Cassius does indeed find some of the broken glass with his bare feet, and swears in pain. Shanks separates from Amdor, trying to find another way out of the library. He moves down the cavern, into a rough-hewn corridor where his breath mists in the air in front of him, and a cold seems to pierce his bones.

Limping and growling, Cassius comes towards the thief, readying his mattock to end things in a single great swing. Shanks has just enough time to see that one end of the mattock is stained, possibly with blood, before Amdor closes in on the big man to distract him.

Keith rolls a weak hit on his Hacking and Slashing, and Amdor slips the point of his sword through the gap in Cassius' unfastened jerkin, drawing blood, before being slammed back by the shaft of the mattock.

Shanks opts to Defend by whipping the blanket off his head and throwing it over Cassius, hopefully tangling up his arms and impeding his vision. He rolls a weak hit and gets 1 Hold.

Cassius turns his attention to Amdor, who's got a weapon out. Cassius balances on his good foot and prepares a big swing with the mattock. Amdor goes underneath it, lunges forward and stabs Cassius in the shoulder. It's a weak hit, so Cassius deals some damage by kneeing Amdor when he's close. This would have been a full-bore hit with the mattock if Dave hadn't spent his Hold to halve the damage.

Shanks' rapier whispers from its sheath now, and Cassius is beset by two foes at once. He twists to avoid Shanks' rapier, but Amdor's sword licks across his throat. He goes down in a spray of crimson. In the freezing cold corridor, his blood turns to red ice as it hits the floor. Amdor and Shanks turn their lantern down the corridor to the squat iron door at the end.
It bears two glittering runes, and both players Spout Lore recognising one as the rune Grundloch uses to identify himself and one as the runic symbol for Water, with a box indicating solidity over the top, hence meaning Ice. Neither of them know what the Frost Heave is yet, but at least they know there's something Icy behind the door.

Noticing the already frozen form of Cassius, the two opt not to try to open the door yet, and instead return to loot the little sleeping area Cassius came from.

Amdor's pleased to find a Nice Big Knife, which he straps on, and Shanks rifles through Grundloch's Big Box of Reagents before failing to identify any especially portable gear, and deciding that the box itself, which is about the size of an upended microwave oven, is too big to carry around with them.

They also find a few empty barrels, made of white oak, with brass banding. Various runes and symbols in iron are set into the bands. A check of the lids for residue reveals that they've been used to transport clay, but they're now as good as empty. (These are my idea, since my version of Grundloch's more a sculptor and worker in clay than an illusionst. The barrels don't only preserve clay - they'll keep anything stored in them fresh and usable when the lids are on. They'd be worth quite a bit, say, to an exotic fishmonger or caterer who wanted to be able to transport delicacies to noblemen's tables).

Also, the two have a chance to see what the simulacrum had in the pockets of its robes (not a lot), and what it was writing on. I've got a copy of the map that I've annotated and adjusted, so I give that to the players now. In addition to the map, they also have some of Grundloch's notes to refer to. He still has most of his notes about the Idol with him, but at least it will let me feed them information about the other rooms in the Hall Under the Hill.

Grundloch's notes do also mention what great luck it was to find a ready source of food here under the Hill, and especially since the Redsilk Mushrooms have healing properties. Reading that out loud, Amdor and Shanks check through Grundloch's rations and fix themselves each a bowl of 'shrooms. They decide to hole up for a short while, check the notes, and in essence Make Camp.

They get a strong hit on the roll, and opt to be "well-hidden from enemies". This isn't entirely possible, since they're actually camping on Grundloch's bed, but I interpret it (as a fan of the characters) to mean that Grundloch imagines Cassius will take care of any intruders, and is too preoccupied with his progress mastering the Idol to come back and check.

Fed, rested and newly-informed, the two retrace their steps and are confronted in the entrance to the library by three lizardmen, influenced to go there by the Frost Heave. Two of the lizardmen have shortbows, with one arrow each wrapped in oil-soaked cloth. The Frost Heave has sensed Grundloch's growing power over the Idol, and is worried, and has dispatched these three warriors to threaten to burn his precious books. It doesn't yet realise the warm blood it's been feeling nearby is that of our "heroes", and maybe it never will.

The third lizardman has a trident and a small shield, and is in charge. Before the two archers can ignite their arrows, the PCs decide to rush the lizards, and so it commands them to fire. The unaccustomed weight of the fire arrows, combined with the rushing attack of Amdor and Shanks, yields ineffective missile fire, and then it's a melee. Shanks darts past the lead lizard, trying to stop the bowmen reloading. His rapier finds a mark in one, and he moves to try to put that one between him and the other.
Amdor turns his charge into a lunge, but a disastrous roll by Keith leads to the elf almost being spitted on the lizardman's longer weapon. Amdor grits his teeth to keep from crying out in pain, thanking his lucky stars that the lizardman hadn't brought a spear, or it'd have been all the way through him.

Shanks continues to harry one of the bowmen with jabs from his rapier, but fails to pay attention to the other, who has removed something from his belt...

Amdor twists and spins like a dancer, inside the reach of the lead lizard (Keith decided to go all out here and deal an extra d6 damage but expose himself to a return attack, and then rolled a Strong Hit and 17! damage), and then runs the point of his blade straight through the lizardman's iron breastplate. The trident clatters to the floor as the lizardman collapses in agonised shock. The second bowman takes advantage of the space to hurl a missile at Amdor. I decided to play up the lizardmen's association with the Frost Heave, and made the attack a flask of supercooled brine, which crashes against Amdor's already-battered shield, chilling it and numbing the arm behind it.

However, now that it's two against two, in melee range and one pair is armed with long pointy swords and the other with shortbows, the score is soon Elves and Humans 2, Lizardmen 0.  Amdor and Shanks each help themselves to a shortbow and 8 arrows, and continue on, past the Parliament, to the cavern of the Mesmerising Menagerie.

The cavern is deserted. The menagerie's gone. And all the redsilk mushrooms that used to festoon the walls are gone, too. (Grundloch did this.)

The PCs ponder for a moment, then continue on, nearly stepping on a goblin's corpse in the corridor leading to the Cavern of the Idol. This goblin seems to have died in horrible agony, its back bent like an overstrung bow. They pass two more similarly-demised goblins as they re-enter the large cavern (Grundloch did that to the goblins, too)

They move around the lower end of the cavern, studying the Scrying Pool. Neither of them dares touch it, since they've seen the note "Gaurrax?" on Grundloch's map. Shanks picks up a pebble from the floor and moves to toss it into the pool.

The pebble halts in mid air, and then is drawn over to the idol with a sharp crack. Shanks swears out loud and the two adventurers move over to the idol. They notice that the lower half of the idol is covered with old rings, swords, and even the two ends of an iron-shod staff, the wood long since rotted away. Amdor feels his sword twitch in the scabbard and backs away slightly.

Remembering the chaos that had reigned here in their last visit to this cavern, the two look around for any other occupants, but all is silent. What's going on here?

And at this point, since both the players and I were yawning, we decided to call it a night. I'm ashamed to admit that I was so tired, I forgot to do the End Of Session move. I might just have to assign the players maximum exp at the start of next session as an apology.



Anarchangel

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Re: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.
« Reply #20 on: February 28, 2012, 06:43:49 AM »
It occurs to me that deliberately doing the End of Session move at the start of the next session might be a great way of recollecting what happened in the last session.

Doug Hare

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Re: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.
« Reply #21 on: February 28, 2012, 06:53:53 AM »
I do usually begin the session with a recap of last time, but I do like the idea of making it slightly more formal.

I might just rename the End of Session move to What Has Gone Before... or maybe Last Time, In Dungeon World.... How about When We Last Saw Our Heroes...?

Anarchangel

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Re: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.
« Reply #22 on: February 28, 2012, 07:08:26 AM »
Last time, in Dungeon World...

*cue wobbly camera effect*

I love it!

Doug Hare

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Re: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.
« Reply #23 on: February 28, 2012, 04:24:39 PM »
I think we might have something here. Think of it as the credits to the Dungeon World TV show.

When you recap the last session, ask your players if any of their bonds have been resolved, and the scene where it happened, and mark XP for any which have, before replacing each with a new one. For every awesome moment (to a maximum of 3) the players recall from last session, everyone gets an XP.

mease19

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Re: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.
« Reply #24 on: February 28, 2012, 04:43:29 PM »
When you recap the last session, ask your players if any of their bonds have been resolved, and the scene where it happened, and mark XP for any which have, before replacing each with a new one. For every awesome moment (to a maximum of 3) the players recall from last session, everyone gets an XP.
So if they actually remember the last session, they get to double dip for XP they already earned from the end of session move?  This isn't really a chore, even if one person gave the recap it would mean spotlight time for them.  Why reward them further for it?



Anarchangel

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Re: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.
« Reply #25 on: February 28, 2012, 04:49:31 PM »
I was imagining that this would replace the End of Session move when it was used.

Doug Hare

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Re: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.
« Reply #26 on: February 28, 2012, 05:00:47 PM »
I was imagining that this would replace the End of Session move when it was used.

So was I. When I notice my players are struggling to stay awake (hopefully because both my players are working fathers of small children, and not because I suck as a GM), then I usually end the session at the next opportunity, and that makes me likely to forget the End of Session move.

As I said, I like to begin with a recap of last session anyway, and formalising it seemed like an idea worth exploring. Maybe it could be "For every cool thing someone else remembers your character doing from last session, you get an XP?"

Plus, if you award the XP at the start of the session, it might make levelling up a little quicker. Not that it's a long process now, though.

noofy

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Re: Actual Play Report - DW/Bloodstone Idol - The Tales of Amdor and Shanks.
« Reply #27 on: February 28, 2012, 11:43:37 PM »
Wonderful AP yet again Doug!
Did you find the players describing more than 'I hack and slash' or I 'discern realities' or 'I spout Lore'? To do it, do it, y'know? I suspect strongly that you guys did, it seems like from your write up that the Parley turned Defy Danger was a great example of 'mistake and correction', putting the fiction first, as too the making camp roll! I Love the 'sroomery - talk about a cool thing to re-incorporate.

It appears you have a very narratively involved little group, that seem to really been enjoying DW :)

I like your discussion with Hamish on the end of session roll as a start of session roll. 'Previously on Dungeon World'....
With perhaps the players having some questions that they could put to the group as a means of coalescing their purpose in the upcoming session?
It also gives the group a chance to discuss the fictional ramifications of anyone levelling up, and the advances they take. It allows the GM a space to formally hand out custom love letters as part of the process (if they have any).

I Like too! In fact, I think I may just start playing the end of session as 'start of session' move.

Great AP! More adventures of Amdor and Shanks! Yay!

Doug Hare

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Drat, I keep forgetting to write up last week's session. Hopefully I'll get to do it tomorrow, and it should help me refresh my memory before the new session tomorrow evening.


Doug Hare

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And here we go again:

We began last session with the End of Session move I forgot to do the week before, and so I introduced the session with "Last time, in Dungeon World..."

The players seemed to warm to this bit, and even with the delay in between sessions, recalled most of the salient points from the last game, and forgave me a few minor lapses.

(Here's a thing: Shanks has a bond "Amdor has my back when things go wrong". How is that bond going to be declared as resolved? When does it count?)

We return to the two adventurers studying the idol, which is festooned with the remnants of consumed magic items, and has cracks and interstices packed with Grundloch's signature magic clay. This, of course, is how Grundloch is controlling the idol - through a combination of the blood spilt in the complex to power the idol, the magic clay, and some sympathetic magic, he has impressed his will upon the idol, and is now mentally dominating the goblins and lizardmen to carry out his will. He's now heading off to put his new small army to use. It's a good thing he's not brilliant at military tactics, and that his assistant Cassius, who was better at it, came down with a slight case of death last session.

Amdor and Shanks consult the map and are highly curious about the room which "Was A Temple".  It's nice and close, so they grab their stuff and head over to it.

The doors are closed, roped shut, and covered in goblin sigils, drawn in goblin blood.
The boys step over the corpse of a lizardman who died in agony (if the creatures resisted Grundloch's control, he used the idol's power to kill them, eliminating dissent), and study the door. A Discern Realities from Shanks yields no good ideas, and they're both shocked when the door moves slightly, as if shoved.

From behind them, the lizard's corpse sits up, and moans "Free me", in a long drawn-out voice, as Urlaz the captive demon struggles to make the voicebox work.

Swords emerge from scabbards as the two delvers go back to back. "Who said that?" is asked, accusingly.

Urlaz switches between pleading for release, and threatening consequences if he isn't let out. I start off by doing the drawn out hissing voice, but when my throat complains, I switch back to normal. Both players have used Charisma as a dump stat, or very close to it, so the characters don't manage to get a lot of information from Urlaz, except his name, and the fact that he doesn't know how long he's been down there. They're still not sure if he's the spirit of a long-dead member of the Order of The Idol, or something worse. Urlaz offers them treasure, but they don't bite. After scanning the doors to reassure themselves he can't get out, the duo leaves Urlaz to his own devices and heads off North, through the idol's room, and up the scree-laden slope to the Hall Under The Hill.

The slope's been nicely trodden down by 80 or so sets of feet (my own figures, and I don't tell them any number other than "several", and they make it up easily, and remember to sheath their weapons as they move through the Hall. The main doors are open now, and the guys notice that the barricades outside have gone (torn up by Grundloch's army for firewood). Also they spot that the doors have a new feature, a large deep gash across the symbol of the Idol that's on them.

(What happened here is that Grundloch got annoyed with the Hall's sentinel announcing the departure of all the goblins and lizardmen, and lashed at the anchoring runes with a powerful spell. It shut the sentinel down, and released more magic into the area for the idol to work with. Hopefully, it makes the characters more aware that Grundloch has a number of nasty strings to his bow. Metaphorically)

The two come away from the main doors, ready their lantern and head to the vault. Shanks uses pieces of soft clay and carefully removes broken tool fragments from the lock mechanism so he can pick it. He does, and the doors can be pushed inwards, allowing the two into the vault.

The two aren't fooled by my descriptions of the empty vault, with empty shelves, rusty stains on the flagstones at the back where chains used to hang, and grooved trenches for carrying away waste from the poor unfortunates chained there, and they start to search the room.

As he checks over his shoulder, Amdor could have sworn he saw a figure standing over near Shanks, but before he can call out, it's gone. Meanwhile, the shelf in front of him almost seems to rattle, and he prods it lightly. Oddly, it hinges upward, revealing a secret cubbyhole. In which is a mere length of rope. He pulls it out, and onto the floor, looking for anything more interesting in the small compartment and finding nothing.

Shanks, tapping the flagstones and wall at the rear of the room, feels the hairs on the back of his neck prickle, and whirls around, spotting another transparent figure seemingly reaching for Amdor's sword, and calls out in alarm.

That figure disappears, but another materialises far closer to Shanks, and the thief takes a leap back to put the wall to his back. The transparent figure is humanoid but it's face and outlines seems blurred, (like a photograph with a too-slow shutter speed). It reaches out a hand to Shanks, and Shanks panics, dashing for the door. The figure's hand passes through Shanks' body, and the thief feels a terrible chill grip his chest. It's only three damage, but it makes him even keener to leave.

Which is why it's such a shock when the doors slam shut, and now, clearly visible are six ghostly figures, three to each door, trapping the adventurers inside.

Amdor's blade whispers from it's scabbard, and whisks through the figures, disrupting them, although they reform a short distance away. Amdor gets a hand to the door and pulls it ajar, and Shanks hurtles through it, terrified.

As Amdor struggles to keep the door ajar, he hears a voice address him in Elven, and momentarily stops exerting himself to pay attention. Manifesting in front of him is an emaciated Elvish ghost with a slit throat.

The ghost explains why the spirits are trapped and begs Amdor and Shanks to help them. Suddenly there's a cacophony from all the spirits as they voice their various (and some quite insane) last desires. It turns out that the elf ghost wants nothing more than to see the sun again, and to be in the light once more, and it thinks Amdor's blade (which Amdor doesn't think is magical) can offer it enough purchase to get through the enchantment on the vault.

Shanks feels a twinge from the mark on his forearm. Did I mention that, since his "three good deeds" deal with the goddess who appeared to him during his Last Breath move, Shanks has had a black trefoil mark on his arm, with her symbol at the centre? Well, he has. Shanks offers his services, too, and ghosts try and ride out of the vault on a few pots of magical reagents he pinched out of Grundloch's kit. Shanks also grabs the rope from the floor (it's the Rope of Tricks) to carry, and ghosts also try and ride out on that, unbeknownst to the pair, who so far think it's just a coil of mundane rope.

Long story short, the two characters make a very creepy-feeling trip to the surface, and the cloying pressure around them dissipates in the sunlight, partly because it's what some of the ghosts want, and also because sunlight is a bane to Undead.

As the ghosts disappear, each character hears a whisper in his ear: Amdor hears the elven ghost, who thanks Amdor and tells him he's earned a favour with the ghost's family, the Dorallens.

Shanks hears a spectral whisper telling him about the secret cache in the Idol's chamber, and how to open it. He grins and, after a short moment of reflection, the two adventurers make their way back inside. (When Shanks next studies his arm, he'll discover that one of the leaves on his trefoil mark has turned gold. The players also got to mark XP).

The duo make their way back through to the carved fresco on the wall of the Idol's Chamber, and Shanks uses his new-found knowledge to open the cache, which is promptly looted. Shanks grabs the sacrificial knife, which I describe as being bronze, old, single-edged, and nasty.

Amdor helps himself to the shield, and the two each put on a pin with the Order Of The Idol's symbol on, for no other reason than they look cool. They discuss what to do next, near enough the lizardman zombie that Urlaz can almost overhear, which is why this exchange happens:

Shanks: I'd say we're almost done in here
Amdor: Still a few things left to do - we could try and deal with those flying fire things now we've got bows, and we've still got whatsisname to deal with.
Lizardman zombie: Urlaz!
Shanks: Aaah!
*Shanks makes a "let's move elsewhere" gesture to Amdor, and the two sneak away*

In fact, they sneak all the way to the Library, where they want to go through Grundloch's remaining notes, and any books they can find there to see if they mention Urlaz and how to kill him.

Not being natural readers, it takes them a little while to get organised, but they do manage eventually to worm their way through enough notes to Spout Lore, and they don't like what they come up with. They learn to expect Hellfire, and discover a few more similar demonic names in what they eventually come to realise is the Infinite Folio that's in the library. They deduce that the last syllable of Urlaz' name is key, since it denotes his lineage flows from Azogoth, a major demon, but since Urlaz isn't listed amongst that demon's captains and lieutenants, they're able to conclude he's a fairly low-ranking demon, and thus they start to imagine they might be able to take him down.

So, they hatch a plan involving the two of them tricking Urlaz out of the Temple and eventually pushing him into the Scrying Pool in the hope that the Gaurrax will attack him, and then they can finish off the presumably-wounded victor. Shanks has an idea involving using their newly-found coil of rope to lasso Urlaz, and is quite surprised when the rope picks the idea of "lasso" out of his intentions and forms itself into one. Amdor doesn't notice, and continues the plan, mentioning that they could cut tripwires from the rope. Upon Shanks hearing the word "cut", the rope picks that idea from his mind, and shivers like a snake version of Scooby-Doo. When Amdor says "cut" one more time, there's a flurry of motion as the terrified magic rope tries to hide in Shanks' backpack, whereupon Amdor draws his sword in panic, and the rope burrows to the bottom of the pack and seemingly refuses to come out.

Shanks taps his pack and makes soothing noises before it dawns upon him how insane he must look to onlookers, and giving up.

The two pack the Infinite Folio away as More Loot, and return to the Hall of the Idol, only to be brought up short as they notice a small group of goblins near the Not a Temple's closed doors. Three goblins are swathed in their brown Jawa-esque robes, but the robes are embroidered with a few symbols in black and red thread, but standing apart from them is a big goblin. Well, big *for* a goblin.
If your average goblin is the size of a halfling, this one is the size of a dwarf.
And I mention that this is a decent comparison, since this goblin is both bulky and pugnacious, and has just used the war-axe in his right hand to separate the lizardman zombie's head from it's body. This bellicose goblin is the first to notice the two delvers, and eagerly hefts both his axe, and the war-flail in his left hand.

Amdor grins, whisks his rapier from the sheath, and beckons the big gob forward.

Shanks, who is Never Caught Off Guard, has an arrow in the air before any of the robed goblins can react, but after a marvellous Volley roll, Dave only turns up a mere 1 damage.

At this point, one of the shamans (because that's what they are) calls out "STOP!", and to their surprise, the big goblin takes this advice.

Moving gingerly forward, the two adventurers engage the gobs in conversation, despite their every instinct telling them that they should be engaging them in combat.

This is Glug, the goblin chief, who's very annoyed at having his whole tribe either stolen or, in the case of the few who struggled, killed by Grundloch. It unfolds that these three shamans and the chief were in a protective magic circle  carved into the floor in the Chief's quarters when the Idol's effects hit, and that's why they're not currently moving cross-country with the rest of their tribe and the remaining lizards, who the Chief also hates. They've come out of their cave to make one last check on the sigils binding in the demon, since last time he got free, it took the deaths of Too Many Goblins to put him back inside.

Even the goblin Shanks put an arrow into is fairly sanguine about it, since he was going to have to get cut anyway - the sigils on the door are drawn in his blood, and it's partly his life force sealing the door shut. They even return the arrow.

Shanks and Amdor start to wonder exactly what the hecketty hey is going on here, since these goblins are way too friendly and open, and one of the shamans points at the small pouch of coins hanging from Shanks' belt (the ones that he looted from the offerings in the stone circle at the very start of the adventure), and declares that the two adventurers are clearly their allies, having been summoned to, and taken their payment from the stone circle. His only regret is that the shamans and chief weren't there to greet the warriors, when the unfortunate loss of goblin warriors which has happened when they met the warriors could have been prevented.

Shanks and Amdor are still on the back foot, conversationally speaking, but since the shamans and the Chief (who doesn't speak a lot of Common, and has the shamans translating for him) have a fairly similar aim to theirs at this point, namely Find Wizard, Kill Wizard, they are gently persuaded to accompany the gobs on their way to go and do it. So they do.