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Tuesday 29 November 2016 Tuesday: Awesome Cult Leaders Edition!

Today on, I take a look at a much-maligned profession: Cult leaders.  Sure, MOST of them are pretty godawful, but remember that most major religions started as a cult (not that this necessarily improves the reputation of cults, given how shitty some religions are).  Anyways, the point is that over the course of the 20th century there were some real and serious spiritual thinkers who were given, at one point or another, the status of 'cult leader', but what they were actually teaching was really pretty awesome.

In my newest article, I take a look at a list of some of those 20th Century cult leaders that I thought were pretty fucking awesome.

As always, if you like this, please feel free to share it!


Currently Smoking: Lorenzetti Poker + Solani Aged Burley Flake

Monday 28 November 2016 Monday: Porn Stars for Trump Edition!

While some of the adult industry are afraid of a Trump presidency, others think Trump is good for America and might be good for business, too.

In my latest article, I take a look at a dozen well-known stars in the adult industry, all of whom voted for Donald Trump! Some of them, you'll find, have pretty interested reasons, and prove to be fascinating people.

So check it out, and as usual, if you like the article, please feel free to share it.

Currently Smoking: Missouri Meerschaum + Stockebbye's Bull's Eye Flake

Sunday 27 November 2016

DCC Campaign Update: Into The Shithole!

When last we saw our stalwart PCs, they were being hunted by both the Minotaurs and a Fire Vampire. Or, more accurately, Bill the Elf was being hunted by both of these, and everyone else was being killed as innocent bystanders.


-"Hey Elsa, want to worship G.O.D.?"
"No. G.O.D. will be no help here. Only shovel is needed."

-"Why not get G.O.D. and a shovel?"
"Adding G.O.D. as a superflous factor to an already complete formula does not justify G.O.D. existence!"

-"We should go to the Azure Tower. I have to make peace with the Azure Order, and then they'll help me."
"They won't help me! Those freak-wizards will all be like 'no you shouldn't make Priscilla queen of the Grey Lands again, she's too attractive!'"

-"we don't really need to help Priscilla."
"Fuck you, cleric! You guys, that cleric is a total perv! He tried to touch me in the rectory!"
"I did not!"
"yeah you did! And you probably have gonorrhea!"

-"Maybe we can find Morris. Priscilla, you'd probably like Morris."
"Is he rugged?"
"Not really. More like Creepy."
"So he's a cleric?"

-"Wally, you and Yarr should go back to Gaga. And take Priscilla with you, take her to Harembe."
"Is this Harembe rugged?"
"Actually.. yeah, probably."

-"We'll meet with Queen Zoey."
"She'll have to welcome me, because we're both beautiful princesses!"

-It was thus decided: half the party (the ones who didn't show up to this session) would return to Gaga with Wally the Airedale Terrier, and take Priscilla the grey-alien-chav with them to keep her out of trouble. Meanwhile, Bill and Shebubu would teleport to the Azure Tower to try to convince the Azure Wizards not to kill Bill and to help them with the Fire Vampire. And Elsa will probably go off hunting vampires on her own.

-Unfortunately, Bill fumbles his Planar Step spell-check, and Sezrekhan hijacks his trip. Bill is told by a clearly-more-insane-than-usual Sezrekhan that he has to find the High Council of Wizards and destroy them. Unfortunately, Sezrekhan doesn't know where their secret headquarters are found, but he has discovered that there's apparently a way to get to them, in the worst region of the entire world of the Last Sun... a place called "The Shithole".

-"Maybe it's not such a bad place, it just has an unfortunate name?"
"I doubt it."

-"Bill and Shebubu find themselves on a mountain overlooking a vast area of badlands, cracked earth, where almost nothing seems to grow."
"We might be in Australia."

-Meanwhile, Morris is in Gaga. He's been imprisoned as his excessive Creepiness has led him to go over the legal limit of his likes/dislikes ratio on Coolland's social media. Coolland's dungeons are full of people: creeps like Morris, but also ugly people, weird people, very old people, people who are depressed in uncool ways, and almost anyone else who isn't young and hip and chipper.
"And there it is! The Dystopian side of Coolland! I knew it was too nice to be true!"

-Jalludin the Rogue suddenly sneaks into Morris' cell, apparently right out of a shadowy corner!  He tells Morris that he needs to tell Bill that Sezrekhan has gone completely insane, and has to be stopped. Jalludin wants Bill's help.
"But how can I even get to Bill?"
"I'm going to stab you with the Dagger of Teleportation. It'll send you to him."
"Ok. Wait.. what do you mean the Dagger of--ARGHH!!"

-Morris suddenly appears, with a nasty stabbing injury, near to Bill and Shebubu, on the mountainside.
He barely manages to avoid plunging to his doom.
"The dagger isn't even very accurate!"

-"What the fuck happened to you?"
"I got stabbed!"
"You deserve everything that happens to you."

-Suddenly, a Minotaur appears on the mountainside, right near Bill.
"See? THAT'S accurate teleportation!"

-Bill shoots a magic missile at the minotaur, doing only 1hp damage, and slips off into the Neutral Zone. While there, he sees this great column of shadow off in the far distance, somewhere in the badlands of the Shithole.
"So, I can see it only here? Not in the, er, Normal Zone?"
"Oh please, like Bill is ever in the Normal Zone."

-Since Shebubu and Morris didn't actually attack the Minotaur, he doesn't attack them either. He's just furiously looking for the missing Bill. After they assure him they also hate Bill, he even talks with them. When they mention that the area below is The Shithole, the Minotaur explains that they're in the Southern Continent (somewhere to the south of Tholia), and that the Shithole, according to legend, is the place where the Dark Ones first broke out onto the surface world during the great disaster. According to legend, the center of the Shithole is the exact place where the Dark Ones emerged; and it is surrounded by three damned cities, two of which are in ruins.
"And the third?"
"It is a terrible city, known as Tijuana. The shittiest place on Earth."

-"These mountains, do they surround all of the Shithole?"
"Yes, they are probably artificial, created by great magic to try to hold back the Dark Ones."
"So... someone built a wall?"

-Bill comes back from the Neutral Zone and immediately kills the Minotaur.

-Morris reluctantly converts to G.O.D. so that Shebubu will heal him, but only after Bill convinces him.
"See, Shebubu? Even I'm better than you at your job."

-"Bill, Jalludin told me that Sezrekhan is crazy!"
"That's probably just because he's all jealous that I'm Sezrekhan's favorite now."

-"So wait, Jalludin 'stabbyported' you here?"

-Bill tells Morris (who was formerly a terrorist) about Priscilla apparently having a huge bomb.
"Morris gets aroused."

-"So this place is called the Shithole."
"Yup, and Bill's here. We're in a Shithole with an asshole!"

-The PCs half-reluctantly make their way down into the Shithole. Soon after, Morris feels something trembling under the ground.
"Oh shit guys, I think this is some kind of Tremors-type situation here!"
"I'm screaming very quietly."
"Awesome movie, though."

-Not wanting to know what's down there, the party takes to traveling by Levitation spells in one-hour bursts.

-That night, they rest with the protection of a Sequester spell. Some extremely primitive-looking mutants come charging at them and all immolate themselves.

-Continuing the next day, still floating along on a Levitation platform, the party (who were slightly unprepared for all this, missing a few minor supplies like WATER) spot a walled tropical garden in the middle of the cracked barren desert.
"Oh, that's not suspicious at all!"

-Morris climbs into the garden.
"Hey Morris, if all is clear, make a bird noise for us."
Morris then roots around the garden for a while, then comes back into the clearing and literally does this:

-"Why didn't you just say 'all clear'?"
"I don't know..."

-"Let's all go in. Morris goes first."
"I chose the wrong party."
"Too late, ese."

-The garden turns out to have spores that cause very slow-acting toxic poisoning.  By the time they get to the pool in the middle of the garden, saving throws are required. Bill passes out, but fortunately the other two manage to stay conscious, and for some reason drag him back out.
"We still need water."
"It's ok. I have an idea. Plants burn, right? And water won't."

-One hour and a Control Fire spell later, they've killed everything that lives in the garden, and get some water. Which is great, for now, but then they realize they have no waterskins, bottles, or any container of any kind other than a single small scroll-tube.

-In any case, Shebubu gets disapproval for the fifth time that day, and has to pray for 24 hours. They decide to camp out there.
"What do we do while we wait for the cleric?"
"While I was looking for waterskins, I found this old card game: Cards Against Chumanity!"
"Ok, let's play."

-Some time later, Bill and Morris spot a large lumpy purple-furred monster climbing over the garden wall.  He looks a bit like this (only a cyclops):

"I am Shlub!!"

-"who did all this burning?"
Bill elbows Morris, who raises his hand "um.. me!"
"Who are you?"
"Morris the Creephole."
"You must be mighty wizard!"
"Well... I'm mighty in some ways..."
"Shlub seeks great wizard to serve. Shlub will serve you, Morris Creephole!"

-"Fuck it, it was me. I'm Bill the Elf."
"Prove you Bill!"
Bill casts Cantrip. "that was only moderately mighty."
Bill casts Choking Cloud. "Shlub will trust for now."

-The party gets ready to move on, now joined by Shlub.
"Shlub, you managed to drink an awful lot of water."
"Shlub has a water sack"
"Where? You're naked!"
"Inside Shlub!"
"He's like a camel!"

-"Are all the people who live in the hills we're headed to large and naked like you?"
"No, some are small and naked, like you, but naked!"

-"Hey Shlub, can I ride on your shoulders?"
"...if you must, mighty wizard."

-Shebubu gets yet another disapproval!
"What did you do to G.O.D., dude??"

-Bill tries to contact Sezrekhan in the hopes of getting some more information about where the hell the way to the Wizards' Council is.
"BEEP BOOP BOOP: The Daemon you are attempting to reach --- is out of range --- please try to invoke again later"

-Bill fails his Sequester spell with a patron taint, and carves a third eye onto his forehead with a dagger.
"Oooh.. you ARE mighty wizard!"

-After some more marching, the PCs are running low on water again.
"Can you share your water from your water-sack, Shlub?"
"Shlub not see how."
"well... maybe the next time he has to pee he can do it in a cup.."
"Fuck's sake Morris!"
"Shlub could do that. Does Morris Creephole have cup?"
"....god damn it."

-Suddenly, the party crosses paths with a group of hideous tentacle monsters!
"They are Yithi"
"What the fuck?"
"They say they are looking for library. Also, Yithi are real assholes!"
"How do you know that?"
"They speak shoggoth. Shlub speak shoggoth"
"You speak shoggoth??  Do you know my friend Bob Shoggoth?"
"Just because Shlub speak shoggoth not mean Shlub knows EVERY shoggoth!"

-It turns out the library is in an underground cave, which Shlub knows to be full of poisonous slime. So the party does the obvious thing: lead the Yithi all in there, and then Ward Portal the only exit.

-That night, the party is attacked by a group of mutants dressed in rags, who also die horribly immolated by Bill's Sequester.

-"have you guys noticed its been days and days since we saw a Minotaur?"
"The Shithole must have some weird effect that blocks teleportation. That's also probably why Sezrekhan, and Jalludin, teleported us only to the edge of the Shithole. And why I wasn't able to Invoke Sezrekhan!"
"Is that also why the cleric keeps getting Disapproval?"
"No, that's just because G.O.D. hates me."
"You're just like the Fishman!"
"No. He was useless. Shebubu is just incompetent. He could theoretically be useful, if he didn't suck."

-The party is attacked by a giant feathered insect-creature! The Cleric gets massive disapproval AGAIN, and Bill casts magic missile and then disappears.
"Where has the mighty wizard gone???" Shlub refuses to do anything without Bill there to give him orders.
The party looks in serious trouble, until Bill reappears from the Neutral Zone.

-After an encounter with some phosphorescent green mutants, the PCs make their way to a town not far from a large lake. Water at last. The town has some more of the aforementioned mutants, who want to capture the PCs as slaves. But when the PCs make short work of them, their Chieftainess comes out, a large tough warrior-woman. Even so, Bill convinces her that they're better off trading with them.
"Who are you?"
"I'm Shebubu the mighty... no wait, Shebubu the inconsistent."

-This village is apparently a subsidiary town of a small kingdom rules by a mighty sorceress called the Queen of the Lake.
"is the lake queen hot?"
"She is dark and terrible!"
"So, is that a yes?"

-After obtaining a lighter from them (whose 'magic' impresses these barbarians mightily), the Chieftainess agrees to escort the PCs to the town of the Queen of the Lake.

-Along the way, the party encounters a colossal swamp worm!  Bill casts magic missile, almost killing the worm, and vanishes to the Neutral Zone. This makes Shlub panic again.
"The wizard is gone? Where did wizard go???"
"Shlub isn't very smart."
"well, he is with us, after all."

-The barbarian chieftainess, who is a highly skilled fighter, finishes off the worm.

-they arrive at the 'capital' of this little feifdom, which is also a shitty mud-hut village only twice as large as the other one. There, they are brought before the Queen of the Lake. She's a very hot phosphorescent green mutant sorceress. She recognizes Bill as a mighty wizard, and agrees to exchange some of her many potions for some of bill's extra scrolls. She also agrees to tell Bill what she knows of the High Council of Wizards, if he'll sleep with her.
"with me?"
"Yes. You and I are both great wizards. Thus, our child will be a destined super-wizard that will conquer all before him!"
"Sure, ok."

-After their tryst, the Queen explains to Bill that many wizards have come from the 'outer lands' to the Shithole, seeking the Council of Wizards. Some of them had told her that crossing through the Shithole was a quest, and that the way to the Wizards' Council was found in a place in the absolute center of the Shithole. In the place where the Dark Ones first emerged unto the surface world and brought darkness in the great disaster. This place is known to locals as "The Sphincter".
"...seriously? OK."

-"You should not seek the Sphincter, Bill. It is certain death!"
"I've been through certain death before. I always come back anyways."

-The party decides to stay in the Lake Queen's village to rest. While they're partying with the barbarians, Shebubu decides to do a Detect Evil on Shlub, and notes that he detects as Evil.
"So that means Shlub is either not as dumb as he appears and he's something terrible..."
"Or maybe he's just too dumb to know he's evil?"

That's all for this session. Next time, presumably, the party will continue along their route to The Sphincter!


Currently Smoking: Blatter Diplomat + C&D's Crowley's Best

Saturday 26 November 2016

On the Death of the Tyrant Fidel Castro


"Los canallas viven mucho, pero a veces se mueren"

Vamos a festejarlo 

Vengan todos 

Los inocentes 

los damnificados 

los que gritan de noche 

los que sueñan de día 

los que sufren el cuerpo 

los que alojan fantasmas 

los que pisan descalzos 

los que blasfeman y arden 

los pobres congelados 

los que quieren a alguien 

los que nunca se olvidan 

Vamos a festejarlo 

Vengan todos 

el canalla se ha muerto 

se acabó el alma negra 

El ladrón 

El cochino 

se acabó para siempre 

hurra que vengan todos 

Vamos a festejarlo 

a no decir 

La muerte 

Siempre lo borra todo 

Todo lo purifica 

Cualquier día 

La muerte no borra nada 

Quedan Siempre las cicatrices 


murió el cretino 

Vamos a festejarlo 

a no llorar de vicio 

que lloren sus iguales 

y se traguen sus lágrimas 

se acabó el monstruo prócer 

se acabó para siempre 

Vamos a festejarlo 

a no ponernos tibios 

a no creer que éste es un muerto cualquiera 

Vamos a festejarlo 

a no volvernos flojos 

a no olvidar que éste 

es un muerto de mierda

Friday 25 November 2016

Classic Rant: Arrows of Indra: Rakshasas

Here's the quote from Arrows of Indra itself about Rakshasas:

"Rakshasas are a race of humans who were cross-bred with Asura demons. They are thus an Unholy race; though not all members of the race are malevolent, their culture as a whole venerates the demonic Asuras and most Rakshasas have Unholy alignment.

Rakshasas appear taller than the average human, with dark almost soot-black skin. Their canine teeth tend to be longer than the average humans, looking almost like fangs; their eyes tend to be reddish in colour, and they have long hard nails.

Rakshasas have had many mighty kingdoms of their own, most particularly the kingdom ruled by the Asura demon Ravana on the island of Lanka, thousands of years ago in the time of the Avatara Rama. It was Rama who destroyed this kingdom; and since that time the Rakshasas have been scattered to live in jungles, hills and mountains in the peripheral areas of the human Bharata-civilization, sometimes as barbarians and sometimes in small kingdoms. Many of the latter are ruled by full-blooded Asura demons.

Rakshasa society is Unholy by nature, the Raskhasa priests who govern it worship and make human sacrifice to the Asuras, and the Rakshasas are said to be cannibals who drink human blood out of ritual cups fashioned from human skulls. Their Asura-worshipping priests are known for their magical power and for the ability to change shape. Rakshasa society also features powerful Siddhi magicians, particularly famed for their skills.

In spite of all this, Rakshasas are perhaps more common in human society than many other non-human races, second only to the barbarians like the Bhils in frequency; they are often hired as mercenaries or servants of other kind by less-than-holy kings. They tend to be mistrusted of course, but are not automatically persecuted in most human kingdoms and can sometimes rise to high positions. Rakshasas are considered to be very wily, ruthless, and bloodthirsty; they make great magicians because of their demonic blood, and excellent warriors because of their fearless bloodlust in battle."

Now, the thing I really like about Rakshasas here is that they're not 'tieflings'. They're the ancient world's understanding of that same idea, which is to say that unlike tieflings, they generally have no regret about their state (they certainly don't spend a lot of time being woeful emos) nor are they supercool "dark antiheros". They're usually not heroes at all, and if they are, they're considered lesser and tainted heroes for being half-demonic, not more noble or better for it (though perhaps impressive for defying their nature).

That says something about the different views we have in the modern world versus the world of Epic India. Of course, up until about 70 years ago we wouldn't have had views very different from theirs; the whole notion that "dark" is somehow "cool" is a pretty modern development.

On the other hand, its pretty interesting to note that the Indian world concept of the time did not simply treat rakshasas as "orcs", there are subtleties in the handling of them, and while on the one hand it was very clear that they are social outsiders (in human society) and when outside (human) society they tend to aggregate in despicable kingdoms of evil, there was no "kill-on-sight" rule toward them; but on the contrary, it is one of the ironies of the game world that BY FAR the most common non-human race your PCs should see in the Bharata Kingdoms are Rakshasa. There will be Rakshasas living openly in just about every metropolis, several kingdoms (usually of non-holy rulers) will hire them as mercenaries or wizards-for-hire, and some of these will rise up to high positions of influence in the armies or the court. The Epic Indian stories are full of cases of "Such-and-such king was a great devotee of Shiva had these Rakshasa generals in his service" or "Prince whatsisname's chief counselor was a rakshasa". NOW, before we go too far with inclusiveness, the implication is almost always that these rakshasa end up proving to be a corrupting influence on the kingdom.

Of course, once again, as an AoI GM you have the liberty to make YOUR Rakshasa anything you want in your game world (even emo, or drzzt-clones, if you really must). The main reason I included them was because they were emulative, and because they gave people who like to play a really unholy character race the chance to do so (note that "unholy" does not necessarily mean "evil", and it definitely doesn't necessarily mean "chaotic stupid").


Currently Smoking: Lorenzetti Solitario Oversize + H&H's Chestnut

(Originally posted October 11, 2013)

Thursday 24 November 2016

Final Notice for all the Regressive-Left Swine in the Hobby

Trump's victory proves you aren't needed.

It's what your side most fears: you have become irrelevant.
The emperor has no clothes.
We don't even have to give a fuck what you're saying.

Your calling everything 'racist' or 'sexist' or 'homophobic' ("Captain America is racist!", "RPGs are sexist!", "voicing opposition against a bill to censor the internet is white nationalism", "If you don't agree that the new Ghostbusters was funny, you're a HOMOPHOBE!!") was a gun to the head of culture that has now been shown to fire blanks.

We don't need you.
We don't need your agreement, the way you once tried to use force to make us agree with you.

We don't even need to convince you. We don't need to make bargains with you. We don't need to give up principles for you. We don't need to agree to lies in order to get your permission to do something.

We don't need you to approve or agree. We don't even need to consider what you say, because it's been proven bankrupt.
You don't get to be in control, you don't even get to have a say.

We're just moving on without you; first to Make America Great Again and then to save the western world from its own corrupt Establishment elites.

Everyone hates you.
That's why you lost.

The RPGPundit

Wednesday 23 November 2016

Wild West Campaign Report: The Great Horse Race Part II

The second part of our great race from Dodge City to Cheyenne actually started out hundreds of miles south and a couple of weeks in the past.  Deputy Young (a PC who had not been at the last session) was out on a manhunt with Wyatt Earp (who was once more given a temporary US Marshall's badge).  They were after a ne'er-do-well called Dirty Dave Rudabaugh, who had stolen $2000 from a Santa Fe Railroad construction camp.

(Dirty Dave)

They'd gone all the way down to Fort Griffin, Texas, where Young got to witness a real historical event: the first ever meeting between Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday.

Earp had tracked Dirty Dave to Fort Griffin, and when he got there went to see an old friend from Earp's days as a whorehouse bouncer, who was now running a saloon.  He asked his friend about Rudabaugh, and his friend pointed him to a half-drunk gambler who was a known associate of Dave's. This was Doc Holliday.

Now, Young already knew Holliday from his brief visit to Dodge last year (when Earp was away); so he managed to act as an introduction between the two men.  They stared each other down for a little while, and then Holliday (apparently deciding that there was something about Earp that made him worth treating differently from how he'd treat most lawmen, maybe the fact that Earp wasn't afraid of him) revealed that Dave had headed back north to Kansas, in exchange for Earp's assurance that Dave would be taken in alive.  He also told him that Dave's gang had double-crossed him and were somewhere in the north.
Earp didn't think that much of Doc, but took him at his word, and got in touch with Dodge; and soon learned that Dave was now in custody and his gang was in a small town in Wyoming. Earp and Young headed off to catch Dirty Dave's gang and the stolen money.

Meanwhile, the race continues, and with several of the Well-Fargo waystations having been raided, Miller and Smith's teams were considering going off-trail to the town of Goodland, hoping to find desperately-needed supplies to allow them to finish the race. While Billy Houston and Penelope the mule set off over open country in the hope of shaving off 100km of distance to give them a fighting chance of winning.

Smith gets far enough ahead to run into Spike Kenedy and his men; he learns that Kenedy was almost certainly responsible for the raids on the wells-fargo waystations. He also realizes that Kenedy is planning to do something bad to one of the other racers; putting Smith in a position of either having him chase after Miller (who is Smith's friend, and who is behind him) or Zeke (who is ahead of him, and who Smith barely knows). He chooses the latter.

(Spike Kenedy)

Meanwhile, Miller plus both Miller and Smith's buckboard teams cut out toward Goodland. Along the way, they find Zeke's corpse. Apparently, someone got to him before Kenedy.

Earp and Young are on the way to Goodland as well, and they end up running into Zeke's buckboard drivers, heading across open country toward Denver, and pulling Zeke's champion horse "Lightning" behind them.  Earp and Young know nothing about the race, and they have absolutely no idea that these two men were hired by the owner of the Bar-T ranch to murder their own rider and had now stolen the champion horse. They're about to let the men pass, until Young notices something a bit fishy about their story, and suddenly the men start to draw. Earp and Young are two of the best shots in the west though (Young is actually slightly BETTER than Earp, though less famous) and both men are dead in seconds.

Miller and the two buckboard teams get to Goodland, but quickly realize something is off. The townsfolk are all terrified, and they're met by four cowboys who are pretending to be townsfolk but clearly aren't.  But John Joshua Webb, the psychopath that's riding on the buckboard with Kid Taylor, recognizes the men as part of Dirty Dave's gang and gives them a friendly welcome, defusing tensions. They agree to let the teams supply and stay the night. Miller and Taylor realize something bad is up but can't afford to take any action, especially knowing that there's even odds that Webb will take the outlaws' side.

Early next morning, Webb wakes Taylor up; he's got their buckboard ready, and they drag the notoriously late-sleeping Miller onto it, driving his horse Brimstone behind it and heading out of town. As he glances back, Taylor realizes that Webb has set the stable (with Smith's buckboard) on fire. Later it'll become clear that Webb also murdered one of the drivers ("knuckles"; though he spared the other, Hank, on account of Hank being Miller and Smith's employee).

When they get back on the trail and intersect with Smith at the waystation, Smith is livid at finding out that Miller (and Taylor) abandoned Hank in a town under the control of an outlaw gang. But if he turns back now, he'll be all but handing Miller the race. He decides to press on.

Meanwhile, Kid Taylor and John Joshua Webb proceed along in the buckboard, and run into a half-dozen of the Kenedy men. Rather than get closer to them and try to talk their way out of it, they settle on deciding to engage in a 3-to-1 gunfight, jumping out of the wagon and ducking behind some cover. Incredibly, in a shootout that last about six seconds, they end up downing three of the men and chasing the rest away, with no injury to themselves other than a shot that hits Webb's holster.

After Webb brutally murders the fallen, he suggests that it would not be good for their long-term health if the survivors who'd fled should get back to Kenedy and inform the richest man in the west that they had managed to kill some of his ranch-hands and potentially cost him the race. So while Taylor presses on in the buckboard, Webb heads off on one of the Kenedy horses to systematically hunt down the men who'd escaped the gunfight. Taylor is relieved to be rid of the psycho.

Wyatt Earp and Jeff Young get to Goodland, and find the members of Dirty Dave's gang, who confront the two lawmen while using Hank and some of the town's womenfolk as human shields. For a moment, it looks like some brutal gunplay will be happening there too, but Earp manages to intimidate the four outlaws into laying down their arms and surrendering, by making it clear that innocents in the way or not, he has no intention of stopping if he has to skin his gun.


They take their prisoners, plus Hank, and head off toward Cheyenne.

The last day of the race ends up being nail-bitingly close. Smith (on Meteor), Miller (on Brimstone) and Billy Houston (on Jacqueline the Mule) all get in eyeshot of Cheyenne at the same time. There's a mad dash for the finish line, and Miller ends up winning by no more than 20ft.

There's a huge party, the men all get their names in the national papers, Miller gives some of his $500 prize money to Billy (after making up some excuse as to why it's not 'charity'), and all is just about well that ends well. Except that Billy finds out that while the race was going on, back in Dodge, Morgan Earp resigned his lawman job and ran off with Billy's sister Louisa to parts unknown!

The things we do for a woman:

Oh, and Dirty Dave? He snitched on his traitorous gang, and managed to get off a free man, back on the streets of Dodge.


Currently Smoking: Davidoff 400-series + C&D's Pirate Kake

Tuesday 22 November 2016 Tuesday: F*ck Edition

So today, science has shown that people who say "fuck" a lot are more intelligent than people who don't. But to understand why that is, you need a  motherfucking Historian.

I take a look at this study, and then give you all the real History of the Word Fuck.

As always, if you like it, please share!


Currently Smoking: Lorenzetti Poker + H&H's Chestnut

Monday 21 November 2016 Monday: D&D Monsters Edition!

In honor of D&D's getting into the Toy Hall of Fame, over at I've done a list of 20 of the most iconic D&D monsters ever.

Go check it out, and share it if you liked it! There's nothing new there for experienced gamers, but non-gamers may find it interesting as one piece of the 'making sense of that weird hobby' puzzle.


Currently Smoking: Lorenzetti Volcano + C&D's Chestnut

Sunday 20 November 2016

Classic Rant: Arrows of Indra: Vanara

The Vanaras are the race of monkey-men who live in the southern regions, in the Dandaka Jungle. They are particularly famous in Indian Mythology thanks to Hanuman, the god who was also a member of the Vanara race and is one of the great heroes of the epic Ramayana.

The Vanara are an ancient civilization, long past their prime. They were never as advanced as human civilizations came to be, but were already civilized when humans were still barbaric. For much of their history, they were engaged in struggles with the mighty Asura Kings who rule in the south, and at the time of the Avatar Rama, the Vanara were under serious threat from Rama's enemy, the Asura King Ravana, lord of the mighty Asura empire of Lanka. Hanuman and Rama became staunch allies in defeating Ravana and destroying his empire.

After that time, over the last several thousand years, the Vanara have become more retiring, interacting less with humans. In those few human city-states south of the Riksha and Vindya hills/mountains Vanara are still found with some frequency, but in the north they are of sufficient rarity as to attract attention (if they wish to, of course, because a Vanara stripped of his clothing or equipment can very easily pass for a regular monkey; and Vanara wear clothing as decoration rather than out of modesty).

In terms of game-design for Arrows of Indra, I had to include Vanara for emulative reasons; in fact, the Vanara were the very first PC race I was absolutely certain I would be including in addition to humans. I think that most westerners with only the slightest notion of Indian myths would, if pressed to think of a non-human race that can be found in Indian myth, mention the "monkey-men". They're a very strong part of eastern mythology in general (with similar though disparate myths found in China and southeast Asia), and really that's not surprising: anywhere that monkeys were common one couldn't help but see these closest relatives of our species and think of them as taking on anthropomorphic qualities.

You could say they take up the niche of halflings, but this would be somewhat of an over-simplification: there's no doubt they're great tricksters, and sneaky, almost in ways more kender-like than the standard Tolkien-hobbit; but at the same time in the mythology its made clear they're great warriors too.
There's also a consideration in terms of Alignment niches: Rakshasas are the "unholy" non-human, Gandharvas and Yakshas are both "holy", so the Vanara satisfies the "neutral" niche.

From a personal perspective, I'd recommend GMs to be careful to advise players to walk a line with their Vanara PCs somewhere between "funny" and "stupid". Certainly, a Vanara can have its silly qualities, but there's a reason why so many gamers these days despise Kender, and a GM should curb any temptation to end up playing Vanaras as just stupid jokers; their depictions in the sources is as very clever, in fact. And even if you don't mind that kind of humor in your games, keep in mind that (in my experience) if you play a character into that corner of just being purely ridiculous, you will find it boring after just a few sessions.

Plus, its just a waste. There's so many dimensions of what you can play with a Vanara, don't limit them into the corner of being the group clown 100% of the time.


(october 16, 2013)

Saturday 19 November 2016

RPGPundit Reviews: The Vertical Halls

This is a review of the DCC adventure "The Vertical Halls", published by Phlogiston Books, written by Gabriel Garcia-Soto.  I am, as always, publishing the printed edition; which is a small sized softcover, 40 pages long.  It has a glossy full-color front cover, featuring what looks like a trio of adventurers about to fall down what indeed appears to be a 'vertical hall', on a mountainside.  The interior of the book is black and white and features some black-and-white illustrations in that typical DCC style, as well as some fairly decent dungeon maps.

The Vertical Halls is described as a Level 2 adventure for DCC, which would mean that if converted to other OSR games I'd say it'd be closer to a level 4-5 adventure for most other D&D-based systems.  As it is an adventure product, I'm going to be using my usual caution of not going into as much detail about specifics as I would with a rulebook or setting/sourcebook, just to avoid potential spoilers for people wanting to play the adventure with all surprises intact.

Suffice it to say that the core of the book is a multi-level dungeon, albeit one with some interesting twists.  The main twist, essentially spoilered by the cover, is that one part of the dungeon is actually vertical, an impossible structure made possible by gravity-affecting magic.  The premise here is of course that "a wizard did it".

The adventure starts out in a small village nestled between several mountains.  The PCs have, for whatever reason (some possible reasons are provided) arrived in this village, and find that it is struck by a mysterious and very clearly magical plague.  Some basic investigation will reveal that the plague has clearly got some kind of connection with a ruined complex up one of the mountains.

Now, a couple of notes: first, I'm not a gigantic fan of setups where the PCs are essentially obliged to deal with the problem of the adventure, and this is that type of adventure, because the PCs themselves will get the plague and will need to go to the Vertical Halls to try to find the cure for themselves. It's even made clear that this is the type of disease that ordinary clerical healing won't be able to (completely) cure. This makes certain that in spite of the possible hooks of altruism to help the afflicted or the lure of treasure in the ruins, the PCs still have to go forward. I would think at least one of the other two reasons could be enough.

On the other hand, the disease in question is interesting enough that it somewhat mitigates for me the sense of distaste involved with it being a vehicle to coerce the PCs into going on the quest.  I don't think I give too much away by revealing that it's called the Tindalos Virus, and those of you who are fans of the Cthulhu Mythos will recognize where the name comes from.  While the adventure as a whole has weird and creepy elements, the author chose to make use of one of the parts of the Mythos that isn't just tentacle-porn, and instead is maybe one of the more interesting parts of Cthuliana still rich for tapping. So, some points earned there!

The dungeon itself contains three main levels. It is very well detailed, and that's lucky because it's also very intricately designed: first, there are many details of the dungeon where areas have important connections to other areas. Fortunately, the author has made good notes for the GM to keep track of what one room might have and how it connects to other rooms or areas.  Second, it has a fairly well-detailed 'ecosystem', with three different factions of potential opponents in the dungeon.  Each is interesting in its own way, and have connections to the other two (in terms of both conflicts and motivations). The creatures are fairly unusual and definitely not just generic.  I think that between that, and the magical architecture of the dungeon, it will make this adventure fairly memorable to anyone playing it.

It's also very deadly.  For starters, the number and variety of hostiles would, I think, be a serious challenge to a group of DCC PCs of the recommended level; this also means you could probably run it with a group of a couple of average levels higher than the recommended and it would still be a very decent challenge.  Second, I think that it could be very hard for a party to get to the main resolution they are obliged by the setup to seek out: the way to cure themselves of the disease.

At the same time, this is at least not a "negadungeon". There's plenty of rewards to be found for a party who enters the Vertical Halls, besides the prize of restored health. This includes lootable material valuables and also magical or other unusual rewards. And on the whole, there's none of the "gotcha" traps some of the OSR writers like to impose.  In some other products you tend to see cases where the designer punishes a party for acting the way a party ought to act in a dungeon; here, if your party is smart and behaves the way a party should act, it will give them the best chance of survival and success.

On the whole, I'd say that the Vertical Halls is a very decent addition to the library of DCC adventures.  You'll be very likely to enjoy it, if you like adventures with a decent dose of weirdness.  And in this case it's interesting weirdness that isn't mostly weird-for-weird's-sake. Though there is one instance of humanoid-monster inter-species romance that maybe goes beyond the thin boundary-line between interesting-weird to "that's just fucked up, dude".

Finally, if DCC isn't your game, there shouldn't be too much trouble for you to convert the material in the game to any other D&D/OSR game.


Currently Smoking: Dunhill Amber Root Bulldog + C&D's Crowley's Best

Friday 18 November 2016

DCC Campaign: The Backstagening Pt. VI

Here's some more of the transcript of our backstage conversations from my DCC campaign (dating from the last couple of sessions):

Shebubu: Oh, Whoom an heroed himself.

Hoom/Equestrian: Someone WAS going to die for not saying the password. Turned out to be him.
But besides the self-awareness, nothing of value was lost. He was a level 1, and had the worst stats i've ever seen in a character.

Shebubu: Welcome to death by Bill town, Population 2 PCs and countless civilizations.

Hoom/Equestrian: It used to be a nice town, but lately minotaurs started moving in.

Pundit: "The minotaurs are easy xp" does not seem to be a theory that's working out well for you guys.

Shebubu: Well, I (Chu) didn't die because of a minotaur, I died because of bullshit demon poison.

Hoom/Equestrian: Mercury poisoning.
You should have cooked Losha better.

Pundit: From a quote on theRPGsite: "well, in the campaign I'm planning on running, Bill the Elf will be a god / patron..."

I'm looking fw to know what are his spells, taints and background story
The germans have a word for what this party does all the time:

too bad the #creepyjuggler won't be coming tomorrow.

Morris: if the team stays in the town, I will be juggling in the creepiest ways, disrupting houses to cuddle people, and that kind of shit

Pundit: Hope we'll see you next time.

Bill: well, if we stay, we can't promise that the city will still be in one piece or even exist.
and if you are not there tomorrow, that means that it's gonna be a bunch of level 1 and 0 and Bill
and even in his best mood and behavior, that does not sounds like it's any likely to have a good outcome
too bad you will miss the royal pole dance.

Shebubu: Did Zabaz die?

Bill: nope.

Shebubu: Fuck.

Bill: Still alive and probably cursing that he is.


Bill: I guess you have to make time to come.


Bill: So is Shebubu coming today?

Shebubu: I am going. We are only missing the Equestrian and Morris.

Bill: So the creep and and the creepy.

Equestrian: Hoooooorseeees

Dwarven Kidnapper: Sorry guys, I'm not going today.

Morris: woooooh

Bill: Darn.

Morris: If Morris is not going, nobody goes. Nobody wants to skip the chance of killing me.

Bill: 4 of us are already here.

Morris: Doh.

Pundit: Good session. No one died. Except Bill's sense of security.

Bill: Damn Fire Vampire.

Morris: No one died, because I wasn't there.

Bill: We might be passing by Tholia pretty soon.

Morris: WWEEH

Shebubu: Bill finally found his equal.

Bill: I need to talk to Pertinax and see what's going on with the lord of blood and fire
If there is such a thing, first time we hear of this fire vampire, Bill is pretty well known for all the wrong reasons.
Bill will be happy to have a shebubu nearby.
And fuck off to another far location...

Equestrian: NO ONE IS SAFE.

Bill: Massacre at Ice Dome Zero.
Or visit the Archemaster with his prize.

Equestrian: Can't we give him Priscilla?

Bill: Or get better, and kill the Duke and the vampire? Well Priscilla does fulfill the criteria required by the Archemaster.

Equestrian: Boom. Problem solved.

Bill: Boom, indeed it could be. And I believe You Know Who would be pretty happy to have that guy gone. They can be happy and dead. Then we sort out the Minotaur issue.

Equestrian: Don't we currently own a bomb? I mean, not us, but almost?

Bill: technically, yes.

Equestrian: Isn't it a BIG bomb?

Bill: Give the bomb to the rebels in Tholia.

Equestrian: I don't think that's a good idea.

Bill: It's supposed to be a big bomb, but knowing Priscilla it might just be a flare.

Equestrian: they might NOT use it. It would be easier to just drop the bomb in Minotauria and be done with it.

Bill: Agreed!
Might not be that easy.

Equestrian: Why not? Spell burn, reach Minotauria.

Bill: How does it work? Remote detonation? Timer?

Equestrian: Wait until you're full, spellburn, leave minotauria, sands bomb.

Bill: Planar Step to the roof of the palace and drop the bomb? That plan did not sound good with a grenade.

Equestrian: An idea worth considering, man.

Bill: Indeed. Fuck it, we might kill Pertinax in the process.

Equestrian: Maybe what we needed was VOLUME. Go atomic big or go home.

Bill: Go nuke or go home.
Or get the word out that those underpants will get you killed, and avoid the whole making another enemy.
Bullshit, that never works.

Equestrian: You know what the answer is. Plan A, man. Fuck shit up.

Bill: trojan nuke?

Equestrian: You are still over-complicating it. Just drop it, and be done with it.

Bill: I guess you're right. Keep it simple.

Equestrian: It'll be interesting to see if we kill the wizard before the 1000 minotaurs.

Bill: They need to be killed in battle; he made that clear. Just a general slaughter would not count, I offered to do that.

Equestrian: Then that's it. Remember when this party had a moral compass?

Bill: then the Archemaster. Then why the Lord of Blood and Fire as a beef with Bill. With Locate Object we might be able to find it.

Equestrian: You ARE one of the most powerful servants of Sezrekhan. He might have a beef with your boss.

Bill: Hmmm. But by now as a Daemon he must be aware of the phylactery, would it be just to annoy Sez.
Specially when Sez is studying the Libram of the Ten Spheres, after which he will be all and all will be him?

Equestrian: Look at you, trying to find the reasons of why things happen to us.
That vampire must have scared you quite a bit.
Is wittle ol' Bill scared of the big meanie vampire?

Bill: Or maybe because at the party at mount Parnassus he got the religious fantastic patron and the lord of b&f just got Friend-Zoned.
Bill dislikes frogs, silk and iron; "vampires" is not there yet on the list

Equestrian: Then be a man-elf and stop worrying so much.

Bill: First time Bill meets a fire vampire, and it tries to kill him, who apparently gets stronger around fire

Equestrian: If the Lord of Blood and Fire keeps pestering us, we'll just find a way to kill him.

Bill: So, no Sequester. No Control Fire.

Equestrian: From what I heard, it wouldn't be the first time this party kills a god.

Bill: Second.

Equestrian: And I could sure use the bump in luck.

Bill: Remember Tiamat?

Equestrian: Before my time. But I know about it.
We just need to get some morons to accompany you and not question the mission.
My current character would do quite nicely in the moron department.
So will Bunda.

Bill: Bunda did great
Yaaaar did great
Even Shebubu did great
Elsa did fantastic
And Priscilla did Priscilla
And Bill just happened

Equestrian: I can't take anyone named Bunda seriously.

Bill: He has aBUNDAnt skills.

Equestrian: Please don't.

Bill: Yarr right.

Equestrian: Good lord. I thought we were done with that when Hoom died!

Bill: never! it's probably the main reason people hate Bill.

Equestrian: I think it's all the genocide.

Bill: Genocide genocide. Potato potato.

Equestrian: I don't see how that phrase could have helped you in any possible way.

Bill: Most things Bill says don't help anyone.

Equestrian: Most things Bill does don't help anyone either.

Bill: Hmm.
I just realized, that the vampire might be after me because I closed the door back to his place and he cannot go back for a while, and maybe it has nothing to do with the lord of b&f or the duke.
And the tricerawasp was like his dog or pet something.
If Sez held a grudge for every time someone messed with his plans to make me do things for him
Straighten things up with the azure order might be the first step to towards redemption

Shebubu: Well, yes it would be, That you want to do it is another very different aspect of this conundrum.

Bill: It's a matter of pragmatism. You can add a Boromir meme: one does not merely hunt down Bill and get away with it.

Shebubu: Oh, I thought you meant this:

Bill: I guess that's a way to get rid of a fire vampire.

Stay tuned for more!


Currently Smoking: Neerup Billiard + Image Latakia

Thursday 17 November 2016

DCC Campaign Update: The Fire Vampire doesn't have a Twitter account

Our heroes, having defeated the Duke of Abstinence's orcish army, were welcomed to Coolland as conquering heroes, and invited by it's new Queen, Zoey Half-Elven, to stay for "as long as they like, or until they become unpopular".


-"Do you think we can stay here for two weeks?"
"I doubt we'll be able to stay popular for two weeks."

-"We've lost sight of Morris. We're probably going to be unpopular in days."

-"So Bill wants to sequester himself with Palombo inside his room with him for two weeks?"
"It's not weird!"

-Coolland's court wizard, Palombo, does not belive in daemon patrons: "too high a price to pay, I always said"
"Yeah, Look at me! I used to look like an Elf. Now I'm a radioactive mutant."

-"Can't these random minotaur attacks you suffer be stopped at the source?"
"Well, they could, but they're good from time to time"
"All your friends are dead."
"Sure.. but I'm not."
"Ah, so they're good for YOU."

-As it proves impossible to avoid the risk of random minotaur attacks, Bill and the others are forced to camp out in the field of fluffy bunnies, outside Gaga (Coolland's capital city).
"Palombo, can I take your rare magical encyclopedia with me?"
"Come on!"
"Nah, on second thought, never mind. I'll never get around to reading it anyways."

-The party members that haven't wandered off on their own (so really just Bill, and the Transparent Mutant Wizard named Bunda), set up a tent for themselves in the field, and Bill starts trying to study to obtain the Locate Object spell.

-Shebubu the Cleric shows up; he'd moved away from the group down in the caves under the temple of the Lord of Blood and Fire, and when he came back the group had left him behind. He finally managed to get out and made it back to Gaga.
"Where's Morris?"
"We don't know, off creeping somewhere."
"That's too bad.. I kind of like it when someone watches me while I sleep."

-"You know, Gaga is full of weirdos. I saw we never go back."

-"We'll stay here while Mr.Bill studies his spell"
"Please, just call me Bill"
"Yes, Bill, sir!"

-Then, a trio of female newbies arrive, looking to join the famous heroes: a boatswine, a hipster elf artisanal candle-maker (her candles don't work), and a halfling sniper.

-" you guys have that sequester thing on that will kill me?"
"No, but if you did, you wouldn't be able to tell"

-"So, can we join your group?"
"You... WANT to join us?"
"They're all surprised about this because usually 0-level newbies have to be kidnapped into joining this group"

-The applicants are interviewed.
"Is your morality... flexible? Like, if you needed to destroy an entire city, would you be cool with that?"
"It depends on the city."
"...OK, you're in."

-"I'm still confused. Do they really want to join us?? Are you sure they aren't some kind of illusion??"

-"I'll use my clerical power to detect lies, to make sure they're not some kind of trap for us!"

-"My boatswine is really quiet. She doesn't like to talk."
"That's pretty smart for a Boatswine. Usually when they talk everyone hates them."

-"Shebubu, take them to the city, gear them up, and above all bring back the receipts!"

-"Oh, we don't sell weapons in Gaga's market. This city is a Safe Space and weapons are triggering!"

-Shebubu and the newbies try to see if they can get some weapons from the palace.  It turns out they had forgotten that the people of Coolland really like Elves; in part because the Royal Family claims to be descended from them.  Emily the elf is immediately invited to meet Queen Zoey.

-She's introduced to the Queen as "Ambassador Emily of the Transparent Dome".  Queen Zoey is of course happy to give her "elven kin" anything she needs, and invites her to a 'vegan dinner' that night.

-Harembe takes the PCs aside after the audience: "Alright, who are you really??"
"Well, I'm a cleric.."
"No cleric would join Bill the elf of their own free will!"
"He forced me."
"...that checks out."

-"well, he is a cleric, he wouldn't lie about x" is rapidly becoming Shebubu's motto.

-Harembe warns Emily that whatever she does, she should not question Zoey's claims of elven descent, and she should not question the "veganness" of the meal.

-Harembe goes to check on Bill: "So these people just WANTED to join you?"
"I know, it surprised us too. If it's a trap, they're only asking for trouble by joining us anyways!"

-At the royal dinner, Emily quickly realizes the "Vegan" beef is actually just beef.

-"I have a present for you, your majesty.. It's a BFF candle."
"Omigod! This is so awesome! I never had a BFF before! Actually, I never even had an 'F' before..."
Emily gets the feeling Queen Zoey leads a lonely existence.

-The Transparent Wizard realizes his "lesser rune" spell allows him to make a permanent "sleep" rune on a stone. Obviously, he makes one.

-Suddenly, another Minotaur attack! This minotaur is dressed as a fast-food restaurant employee.  The Transparent Wizard tries the sleep rune, and it works!

-Bill fails his second Sequester spell in a row; and now he's got a phobia of silk (along with his previous phobias for iron and frogs).

-Shebubu goes back to town, trying to set up a tour service for people to pay 1sp to come see Bill the Elf studying magic! He gets a lot of customers, but they get bored pretty quick, and he ends up with 14 'dislikes'. Then the Transparent Wizard scares them off.

-Another minotaur attack! The 0-levels are surprisingly effective. Espeically Yarr the halfling sniper, who takes the Minotaur down with a critical.

-"If the Minotaurs are after you, why don't you disguise yourself?"
"the minotaurs are drawn to me naturally"
"Like to a cow in heat?"
"Minotaurs aren't attracted to cows! Are you attracted to monkeys? ...Actually, don't answer that."

-Suddenly, a Minotaur appears! This one as a SWAT minotaur.
"Oh fuck you!!"
Bill gets a natural 20 on Control Fire; meaning he's wreathed in magical fire, surrounded by a wall of fire, and has eight spears made of pure fire.
The minotaur sees that too: "Oh, fuck me...."

-"Unfortunately, now your tent is on fire. And all the magic books you got off Palombo"
"God damnit!! Can I try to rescue some of them?"
"How are you going to do that, grab them? You're on fire too!"

-"Try to save the books, Shebubu!"
"No, I'll use the power of G.O.D. to save them!"
He summons up a tiny breeze that does nothing except help the fire to spread.
"The power of G.O.D. sucks!"

-"I knew it was only a matter of time hanging out with Bill before a book burning would happen"

-The Newbies and Shebubu decide to fuck off to town rather than keep hanging around with Bill, who is just too dangerous to their health.

-"Bill are you going to somehow stop the fire from consuming the whole valley of fluffy bunnies?"

-The PCs arrive at the palace.
"Harembe is called up by the guards, so he comes to the palace door. It's late at night so instead of his armor he's dressed only in his normal robe... well, a giant ape robe"

-Queen Zoey finds out about Emily being there, and decides this is a great time for a slumber party.
"Can Shebubu stay too? He's my spiritual advisor."
"Cool! Can you do my horoscope?"
"What sign are you?"
"The hippogriff".
"Oh, well then everything will... go really well for you."

-"is that all he does?"
"We could play a game of spiritual truth or dare!"
" is that different from normal Truth or Dare?"
"It's like that, but with Word of Command"

-"well.. ok."
"Truth or dare?"
"Who do you dislike the most? (Word of Command!)"
"I really don't like Shebubu."

-Harembe suddenly bursts in, kicking the door open "Who used magic???"
"The cleric made me tell him how I don't like him."
"What the fuck is wrong with you??"
"Nothing... I'm really just a shitty cleric."

-Just then, the palace receives a report: apparently the only other town of any significant size in Coolland, Minaj, is being harassed by some kind of hideous monster.
"We could probably deal with that. It's ugly so it's ok to kill it, right?"
"What? No, not just for being ugly! But it does sound like it's also intolerant."

-Bill tries to contact Sezrekhan:
"Hello, this is Sezrekhan! I can't respond to your contact at this time, but if you leave a message after the tone, I'll get back to you.. if I care! *BEEP*"

-Bill takes advantage of his entering the Neutral Zone every time he casts magic missile, to try to find out more about the wizard he saw there, Alamabus.
"See, I cast magic missile and that makes me go to this place where nothing can happen to me, but I can't happen to anyone."
"We all dream of being in a world where Bill doesn't happen."

-The party heads on the road to Minaj, being guided there by their former companion Wally, the talking Airedale Terrier. Bill finally makes a really effective Sequester spell. Unfortunately, in the middle of the night some guy dies horribly immolated when he enters by accident.
"Who the hell was that?"
"who cares?"

-They run into an old peasant woman, armed with a shovel, who gives them odd warnings about Vampires; named Fire Vampires.

-"There's two thing you must know about Fire Vampire!"
"yeah, we know what comes next already."

-"So there's a Fire Vampire coming to kill Bill?"
"Where does it come from?"
"It come from plane of blood and fire!"
"And it's made of fire?"
"In plane of blood and fire there are things of blood, and things of fire, and things mixed."

-"What's your name, old woman?"
"I am Elsa."
"Wait... Elsa from Mt. Parnassus??"
"Holy shit, I met her. It's me, Elsa. I have a new body now but I'm Bill the Elf!"
"Yes, Elsa remember now. You leave Elsa to die at hands of minotaur."
"Well.. you made it out though, right?"
"Da. But Minotaur destroy Esla's tent. Now Elsa is vampire hunter."

-So how are you going to kill the Fire Vampire, Elsa?"
"Elsa has shovel."

-The PCs reach Minaj, and Bill is further shocked to discover that the "monster" that has been plaguing the town is none other than Priscilla! The former Queen of the Grey Realms, Priscilla looks like a cross between this:

and this:

-After a minotaur encounter, Shebubu tries to heal Elsa but fails and gets Disapproval.
"G.O.D. will not help us. Only shovel will help us!"

-"Say, mr. night-watchman, would you by chance be interested in becoming a follower of G.O.D.?"
"G.O.D. didn't help that old woman.."
"Yes, but that's because she's a gypsy or something!"

-"Can I try to send Priscilla one of those bird messages?"
"Yes, but it can't be more than 140 characters. There's also messenger frogs that let you send up to 300 characters, but no one uses them."

-Priscilla wants Bill to send her back to the Grey Realms so she can retake her throne. She warns that she has something she calls "The Device", which she'll use if she doesn't get her way. It turns out "the Device" is some kind of massive bomb she found in the bunker she's been living in.

-"OK, Priscilla, so let's say we get you back to the Grey Realm; you threaten everyone that you'll blow them to kingdom come if you don't get back your throne.. how will you keep it after that?"
"With the device, dumbass!"
"But you can't exactly just stay by it all the time. You'll have to sleep eventually, won't you? How will you stop them from taking it away from you and dethroning you again?"
"Well.. i... Fuck You!! I'm sick of this! I just want to be fucking Queen again and not have to live in the fucking woods!"

-"No dudes, Priscilla's right, you're way overthinking this."
"You would say that, Bill. Your idea of a sophisticated plan is getting to the roof and throwing grenades around."
"he's never going to live that one down."
"I still say it was a good plan"

-Suddenly, there's a minotaur attack. And at that moment, the Fire Vampire strikes! Bill gets hurt very badly, and uses Magic Missile to escape to the Neutral Zone.

-Priscilla bites the Fire Vampire!
"How the hell do you bite a vampire made of fire??"

-"So is the fire vampire going to die?"
"Hell yeah, bitch! Well, unless it's immune. But if not, it's totally gonna die!"
"How soon?"
"In like a week."
"Fuck's sake."

-The minotaur is slain, and the Fire Vampire disappears in a puff of smoke.
"Did we kill it?"
"Nyet. Fire Vampire target is Bill the Elf."
"So if Bill is gone, it won't attack the rest of us?"

-Bill is getting pretty freaked out by all this, so he ends up calling Sezrekhan over and over again until he finally gets him instead of his answering machine.
"I don't have time for you now! I am unraveling the very mysteries of the universe! Soon ALL will be ME!!"

-"We could just try to get out of here. The Fire Vampire can't teleport, so even if it can follow your scent or whatever, if we Planar Step far enough away, it'll buy us a lot of time."
"I'm sick of planar stepping. I always keep planar stepping into bathrooms."

-"You clerics are all pervs! Don't think that just because you got into my good books that means you're gonna get any of this hot body, bitch!"
"Are you hot for Priscilla, Shebubu?"
"Well, I do have really low standards."

-"Cleric could use power of G.O.D. to send away Fire Vampire, if Cleric not suck so bad."
"Sadly, Shebubu does suck so bad."

-"Wait, were you the one who sent that message bird to me?"
"Uh huh!"
"Oh, that was really nice! Also, the bird was delicious."

-The PCs try to send a message bird to negotiate with the Fire Vampire, but it just circles around for a bit then returns.
"The Fire Vampire doesn't have a Twitter account, I guess."

-"I could just make a really good sequester.."
"You mean that spell where you have a fire trap, against the Fire vampire?"
"Oh shit."
"The Lord of Blood and Fire doesn't fuck around. He really knows just what to send against Bill."

-"OK, so let's go get Priscilla's Device and--"
"So you want us to go near a massive explosive device, with the Fire Vampire around?"
"Fuck's sake!"

-"We should contact the palace and let them know we beat the grey monster"
Priscilla: "What grey monster?"

-"Hey Wally, have you by chance ever been baptized into the faith of G.O.D.?"
"No! I do not like baths."

-"Look, I still think we should just planar step far away."
"That doesn't solve anything though; it might take him a long time to find us, but sooner or later the Fire Vampire would catch up!"
"Yeah, but that's a problem for Future Us!"
"That's how you got into this mess in the first place! You make a shitload of enemies, go away, forget about them, and then they all show up at once like in this stupid adventure!"

-"Where could we even run to? Aside from Coolland, everyone hates us everywhere we've ever been."

-The Transparent Wizard remembers he comes from a community of outcast Transparent Mutants who idolize Bill: "We could go to my village!"

-"We could go to Tholia and give the bomb to the rebels!"
"Yeah, that totally wouldn't end well."

-"We could go south!"
"This party always ends up 'going south', sooner or later."

-"I've been thinking... Ok."
"You just said "OK" like you solved something. You haven't."

-"So how could you get rid of the minotaur problem?"
"Well, we could get rid of all the minotaurs. Or all their underwear."

-"So what's the damn plan??"
"Nothing. We stick around and kill the vampire. Or more likely, wait around until the vampire kills Bill."

And at at that point, the session having hit its time limit, and the party being totally out of ideas of what the fuck to do, we decided to end for the day, and at least give the players a couple of weeks to come up with a plan.
I have every confidence, knowing them, that they won't actually come up with anything, and will just solve things the way they usually do: utterly disastrous half-assed improvization.

Stay tuned for more exciting DCC adventures!


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