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Looking around
(1/10/03 10:23:25 pm)
help with remaining stuff in moathouse + hommlet
hi everyone, i'll like to hear some advice bout the moathouse. Currently my PCs have defeated everything inside there except for the Grell, Festrath, and now they're exploring the Ghoul Caves. I'll like to know how I can expand the Ghoul Caves, cos it seems like it's a bit unguarded, and i don't want them to bump into the statue so easily - they'll overlook it if they just find it with no opposition.

What kind of stuff should i throw at them? I was thinking of having ghouls ambush them or rush them mindlessly every so often, ie tunnel warfare a la Viet Cong. For the guardian of the altar, i was thinking of a large hunting cat, maybe a tiger? with the ghast template. Or maybe a spider-like thing that can scramble around on the walls.

I want it to be terrifying, and to throw in the Lloth red herring, as they found the "corpse of Lareth" and his medallions.. the caves are kinda like a winding twisting web, and i want them to panic when they get to the centre of things. I've been throwing up the Demogorgon, Iuz, Tsuggtmoy connections, and it's got the paladins kinda edgy.

For the record, on a side note, the PCs have also taken out and eradicated the cult in Hommlet, with the exception of Jaroo and Vacra whose cover is still not blown. There was an exciting wagon chase scene to the Kron Hills.. Nierithi was hired for a side job to assasinate the PCs, but he's kinda wary now as he saw everyone else get taken down.. i figure he'll head back to Verbobonc to spend some cash, and lay low for a while. Chatrilon's blinded by the sorceror and a bit of a broken man, hiding in the druid's grove paranoidly, and they captured Maridosen and threatened to send her to jail - which she was happy with, cos she's scared of the Cultists. IMC, Dunrat tried to Charm her, to get hot 'n' heavy, but her half-elf traits helped her resist.. and also, Chat's her mentor in swordplay and sometimes lover.

But some diplomacy/ intimidate checks and RP later, Maridosen spilled the beans about the flourmill and about the strange murder rituals the cultists liked, and also gave some hints about the demon-woman, Vacra. The PCs didn't want to let her get lynched, as most of them were followers of Heironeous, and so brought her to the moathouse to discuss her fate. Then Big U came back - he's been gone for 3 days, licking his wounds - and now the tables are turned.

He demanded a maiden in tribute, ie Maridosen, but the PCs begged it off and offered gems and coins in tribute. They told Big U about a monster intruder in his moathouse, and offered to cleanse it for him etc. Big U is leery as his treasure had already been stolen before by a member of hte PCs, but his ego was stroked, and he let it off at that. He flew off, and demanded proper renovations and removal of the moathouse dungeons, and stole a PC's horse while flying off. The PCs let Marid go - they didn't notice her using the feather token to courier a message to Chat, to tell him to flee- and gave her the stuff she had, and told her to make a run for it, and to make penance at the nearest shrine to Heironeous.

I'm thinking Marid isn't a psychopath - she's a bully and vicious, mean-spirited but not insane like the cultists? And since IMC Chat's her mentor, and she betrayed him.. she's feeling kinda guilty bout that. With the recent defence of the PCs for her against the dragon and their mercy, would she be similarly inspired to find a remove blindness scroll or something for Chat, to rescue him?

Thanks in advance.

Still here? Wow.
(1/11/03 3:49:12 am)
Re: help with remaining stuff in moathouse + hommlet
What are the levels and classes of your PCs? I have not been reading all the posts on these boards very extensively lately, so if you posted them somewhere else my appologies.

Personally, I would leave the ghoul caves as they are. If they ignore the statue all much the better, if not then may Heironeous have pitty on their souls. In my campaign the PCs, being the dwarves they are, immidiately closed down the entrance. When they saw the small winding corridors and realized there were probably some ghouls in there, they decided that whatever was in there was not worth it.

Making these catacombs look like a spiderweb is a bit difficult when you think about it. Would the PCs (not the players) realize it is a web? I mean, it is quite difficult to draw a precise map unless you are looking at it from above or have some means of determining where north is all the time and take the time to measure every inch.

As for Maridosen, I like how you are playing her. It gives her personallity some depth and it would fit how most people on these boards see Chat. My players never were really interested in her. I am not even sure they realized she was working for the Cultists. One of the players guessed so, but since his character is rather dumb, he decided his character would never have come to that conclusion based on his observations.

Looking around
(1/11/03 5:11:33 pm)
ghoul tunnels
I would throw in some pits that are old burial pits for decomposing bodies. Maybe there are still some there, throw in some rot grubs, give them something to worry about later on.

Looking around
(1/11/03 11:29:50 pm)
Party's Build-up
Well, my party's line-up is like this:

Sir Araquel Dumas
Aasimar Paladin 1/ Sorceror 5 of Heironeous

Sir Tenedos Oathbrook
Human Paladin 5 of Heironeous

Simon Proudmoore
Human Wizard 5

Journeyman Lezarnus
Human Ranger 1/ Bard 3

Well, as you can see, i've got a rather large XP gap here.. it's due to some PCs getting whacked recently, and the resulting level loss from raising / the player's decision to make new characters have caused the attrition in terms of XP.

i've got two other PCs - one's probably playing a straight fighter 4, elf, and the other is likely to be a halfling ranger/ rogue. their PCs got killed by Chatrilon in a night ambush, and their bodies were left in the moathouse.. when the PCs got back, they were already ghouls.

My intention of throwing in a fight in the ghoul pits was to give them some excuse to get a little treasure. i'm trying to point out that they're a bit under-equipped in Verbobonc and the fight with the advanced grick just reminded them of that fact..

The PCs are pretty canny though, they'll pull out when they get tired. But they have a tendecy of splitting up the party with no line of communication between the two parts, which has already nearly killed them off. How do you address this disturbing tendecy?

Looking around
(1/11/03 11:41:37 pm)
Ghoul Caves
I was just looking through the MM 2.. i think a Spawn of Kyuss may work in well, together with the charnel pits of decomposing bodies and rot grubs? The Spawn of Kyuss is an undead that spits forth some kind of disease-carrying vermin in its attacks, and i thought that fit the image pretty well.

2 of the PCs are paladins, so they won't carry any diseases back home.. but the 2 who aren't may have to be quarantined. I wish to drive home the point that it's a crazed, insanely dangerous cult they're going up against..

And for the rewards, one of my paladin PCs wish to gun for the Shining Blade of Heironeous PrC from Dragon. i'm thinking of putting forth a scripture of blessing within the cave, a relic of a lost knight and his shattered blade. Make a mini-quest, that is geared around finding out more about this knight and to restore his blade, and in return, figure out the monastic methods and techniques to become a Shining Blade, and to gain an enchanted weapon? Something like that.

Also want to provide a sort of journal entry to the past, some knight from a decade ago who quested into the moathouse, together with his dwarven cleric ally, to give some hints and pointers towards Rastor, and the EEE, from the "good guys' perspective". I don't want my PCs to have all the handouts from the psycho baddies all the time haha..

Still here? Wow.
(1/12/03 12:27:03 am)
Re: Ghoul Caves
Hmmm, my suggestion is to get the moat house over and done with and send them off to Rastor. Level-wise, they're just about right.

But if you want to make it trickier, I think Sons of Kyuss are good. Or - as you suggest - the spider fo some Lolth-connection.

BTW, you're throwing out an awful lot of red herrings. Your players up to that?

Siobharek is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

Looking around
(1/14/03 6:56:24 am)
well... erm..
haha, thanks for your help, guys

to be honest, i needed that prudent pointer - how will my PCs know that the thing looks like a spider web, unless i point it out to them? Then it gets a bit contrived. and the red herrings may be a bit too much, i agree..

i've thought of just a simple way to solve things. master thaque, gungash, the dead gnolls in the moathouse dungeon.. all their corpses rise as ghouls and are inhabiting the caves.

Gives some feel of dynamic flow there, and isn't too hard or distracting on my PCs, before they go fight Festrath and head off to Rastor.

Thanks again for your valuable input, Hive Elders.

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