Page 605 - Fair Fair Cry the Horses

9th Jun 2015, 6:00 AM
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Fair Fair Cry the Horses
Average Rating: 5 (2 votes)
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 9th Jun 2015, 6:00 AM edit delete
Newbiespud
As promised, this last weekend was nuts. Over the course of a mere two days, I ran three mini-sessions and one full session of Fallout is Dragons, totaling about six hours of listening content after editing. People have been joking about the UberGM Project, a secret WotC test to produce a nonstop GM...

All I know is, I'm tired, creatively satisfied, and have a lot of editing to do. At least my new mic got a nice stress test.

36 Comments:

Digo 9th Jun 2015, 6:05 AM edit delete reply
Three mini sessions?! You must not care about sleep. :D

Or maybe the party loves splitting up suddenly?
Masterweaver 9th Jun 2015, 6:39 AM edit delete reply
Masterweaver
Little of column A, lot of column B.
Digo 9th Jun 2015, 7:10 AM edit delete reply
Admittedly there is some excitement when the party splits up against the advice not to. Leads to some interesting adventures.
CrowMagnon 9th Jun 2015, 7:12 AM edit delete reply
Speaking of splitting the party, I actually have a story for that! In the Pony Tales campaign I've been running, the party's been trekking through a jungle region, searching for a place called the Ark.

Also in the region are two clans of tribal earth ponies, and the more antagonistic of the two groups has used the tech and magic in the Ark to boost their latent earth pony magic to extraordinary levels, essentially granting them either supernatural strength and toughness, an ability to commune with plants, or earthbending, with their chief possessing all of the above abilities so long as he maintains contact with the earth.

This strength comes at the cost of becoming sterile, so the more powerful tribe regularly takes foals from the other one. In order to help out and ally themselves with the weaker tribe, the party went to rescue the children. While they succeeded in their objective, they were held up long enough by a combat encounter that the rest of the tribe was able to surround them.

From that point, they were given a choice. Try to fight their way free through the entire village, fight the three Elders of the tribe, each of them a master of their respective disciplines of earth pony magic, or fight the chief alone.

The group chose that last option, which proved to be a mistake for them because A) I'd been taking the lessons learned from Newbiespud's frustration with creating difficult bosses to heart, and gave the chief some gamebreaking traits that would apply so long as he was touching the ground. And B) While they did eventually figure out the trick, they did so too late to really implement it, and he was just moments away from completely curb-stomping the ones who were still conscious.

That's when Glacier, a timid griffon with ice powers, made his desperation move. Earlier in the adventure, the party had already collected the key needed to open the Ark's outer door, but only the chief they were fighting knew its location. Knowing that the chief wanted it, Glacier offered him the key in exchange for letting the rest of the party go. He also passed a bluff check to make the chief think that the key had been enchanted so that it would only work for him, so the chief agreed to let the beaten and battered group go free while keeping Glacier as a prisoner to use the key.
Digo 9th Jun 2015, 8:47 AM edit delete reply
Please tell me there's more to this story. You had my interest at first, but now you have my attention.
CrowMagnon 9th Jun 2015, 5:13 PM edit delete reply
What would you like to know? I'm afraid that if you're looking to see how the story ends, we haven't gotten much farther than what I related in the last post, as last week's session was mostly devoted to the party (sans Glacier) recovering from their battle in the allied village and roleplaying out how they got their level-up boosts in the aftermath.
Digo 10th Jun 2015, 4:19 AM edit delete reply
Darn! :) Well I look forward to finding out if Glacier makes it out of the tribe or not.
XandZero2 9th Jun 2015, 10:05 AM edit delete reply
I like how you gave the party an optional way to resolve the boss fight. Nice going.

-Got to admit though, I haven't been listening to Newbie's podcasts, so I have no idea what you mean when you reference the lessons learned from his boss-creation.
XandZero2 9th Jun 2015, 5:03 PM edit delete reply
By 'lessons learned', I mean that his Fallout is Dragons party have made a habit of obliterating enemies who SHOULD be threatening with hilarious ease, and that's on the occasions when they actually fight the boss instead of coming up with ways to use skill rolls to completely bypass combat or otherwise cripple their enemy beforehand.
CrowMagnon 9th Jun 2015, 5:04 PM edit delete reply
Sorry, XandZero2. My brain must have had static or something, because I was trying to reply to you, not usurp your username. XP
Winged Cat 9th Jun 2015, 10:03 AM edit delete reply
Unrelated, but another "party splitting" story: when you have multiple characters that can be in more than one place at a time. (Blame Exalted's Ant and Starfish Trick...)

So you have parties consisting of PCs: A & B; A & C; B & C; A, B, & D (D can't split); C & NPCs...at which point you have more splits than you do PCs. It gets even worse if you add a 4th splitting PC.
ANW 9th Jun 2015, 6:46 AM edit delete reply
Tuesday's Contest
Ever had an adventure where every thing was going well,
and then you do or say something that completely ruins it at the last second?
"Why did say that? Next time we go into that town, they'll kill us."
"All I said was that killing that kid was easy."
"YOU SAID IT IN FRONT OF ALL THOSE PARENTS WITH THEIR KIDS AROUND!"
"We were going to get the reward for cleaning out the Elder Dragon nest too.
At least I got a cool dragon egg out of it"
"That's just a piece of dried dung."
Something like that would work.
The diffince from high to low will win.
Toric 9th Jun 2015, 6:53 AM edit delete reply
My group was playing a Star Wars campaign and had successfully infiltrated the Empire's forces. They'd already grabbed the information they needed and fooled enough people that they no longer needed to make checks. The fleet admiral had congratulated them and was literally on his way out. Unfortunately, the group's liar was a bad liar IRL and also very...forgetful. So as the fleet admiral was leaving, he made a goodbye comment and addressed it to the COLONEL. The fleet admiral heard him and immediately realized something was wrong because he'd been addressed improperly. That character did not make it out.
Digo 9th Jun 2015, 7:16 AM edit delete reply
The day had started off so well... I had saved the life and limb of a ship's medic who fell off the deck, gathered some useful intel for the party to profit off of, defrosted the 'Ice Queen' NPC traveling with the party, and even helped kill the town's BBEG early (earning admiration from the townsfolk). Yes everything was coming up roses...

...and then two characters got into an argument over who should accompany me to the free dinner a sea captain was hosting in my honor. I thought trying to come up with a plan of ducking out of the party early with food would help feed one while the other got to talk shop with the captain, thereby satisfying both of them.

NOPE!

Got shot down, one character got all mopey, the girl I was trying to woo got angry at me, and one of the PCs punched another in the face in front of the captain.

Worst. Night. Ever.
Specter 9th Jun 2015, 10:18 AM edit delete reply
Specter
Our party had finally, FINALLY, defeated our arch nemesis in singular combat (despite the fact I died at the same time as killing him, still a win). The dual lasted about 15 turns of him and I beating the ever loving hell out of each other with unarmed strikes, then another 10 of us trying to skewer the other with blades.

Going to when things go horribly wrong, as I was rolling up another character, the party had spoken with our employer, Queen Chrysalis, about our payment, and if there was anything else that she needed (cause half the party interrupts "love" an emotion that is transmitted through action). No, nothing she really needed, so the party left...

... then got captured from her royal guards cause she thought it better if we were dead so their was nobody who could oppose her. So here they are, in a prison, preparing to be executed (they tried anything to reason with her).

The GM had no idea how to proceed from there without killing something, and that was about the time my new character was made, so now there is a pony spy who gets thrown in there with them (yay). OOC, I had been in another room making a character at the GM's discretion, so I had no idea what was going on at the time... which probably made things from bad to worse when I said, "You'll never break me changeling, I'll rather die in your arena then talk."

... Que us now having to murder each other for the glory of the queen (and one favor from her), in a rather unique way.
ANW 9th Jun 2015, 11:51 AM edit delete reply
Good story, but that was bad to worse, not good to bad.
If anything, worse to bad. It turn form whole party being killed, to one having a chance to get a way.
Specter 9th Jun 2015, 1:53 PM edit delete reply
Specter
Good to bad to ???, the game went sideways for a couple of sessions. Can't really say what went on.
ANW 9th Jun 2015, 6:00 PM edit delete reply
The contest is that the comment or action, made it from good to bad.
Jennifer 9th Jun 2015, 6:49 AM edit delete reply
Well, a horse has just won the Triple Crown for the first time in four decades, so I suppose this is appropriate!

Hm, storytime about negotiation between PCs, perhaps? How do you decide who gets the loot? Or who has to be on point in the dungeon?
Digo 9th Jun 2015, 7:17 AM edit delete reply
Usually whoever is perceptive and fairly quick gets volunteered as our point. Though there have been spring traps that come from behind so...
Loot Tool 9th Jun 2015, 7:38 AM edit delete reply
Many groups I've been in would just put all of the loot in a big pile and then draw numbers to determine the order of selection. It worked... okay... up until college. They had a bad tendency to just pick items for value than personal usefulness. A bit of greed, a bit of hazing each other, a bit of meta-gaming; it really didn't add much to the enjoyment of session milestones.

I got to the point of evaluating the entire pile and figuring out the one or two pieces of treasure my character would be most interested in -- mainly class-oriented items or treasures which bolstered their role in the party. Then I would offer to forego all other picks if my character could pull those one or two items from the pile before the vultures descended.

It usually worked. The others received a larger share of the loot while my character maintained a sense of personal continuity, and generally advanced in ability as would be expected for a solid story progression.

That wasn't a great group, though. At one point we needed to search a village for some artifact. When asked what to do, my character suggested a low-key approach by acting like normal visitors -- secure lodging, visiting public venues, and conduct the search in that manner.

But no. A much louder player announced that his character was searching 'that house', and then 'that house', and then 'that house' by pointing to each one after another, working down each street.

Presumably he was kicking the door in and ransacking the place. Being that he had already bullied the GM into allowing himself a Staff of Wizardry at 3rd level (claiming a previous character of his was related and left it to him in his will), he got away with it.

Which was probably for the best. I have no doubt that he would have just fireballed the entire village to ashes if any resistance had been shown anyway.
Digo 9th Jun 2015, 8:46 AM edit delete reply
Ugh. Condolences about the loot vultures. I try to tailor the loot a bit so that everyone gets something that compliments their abilities. However, if PCs just grab everything purely on value and no thought is put into personal advancement, they're going to get squished in a few encounters when their gear is subpar to the CR's demands.

I'm reminded of one cleric who's AC fell behind by a good 10-11 points because he kept going for gemstone lined armors that were supposed to be just for show. I thought he'd sell them to help poor towns, or at least make the party wealthy, but no, he'd wear it to battle. Learned the hard way that gold is too soft to be a useful protective metal.

...heh, unintentional pun.
Toric 9th Jun 2015, 11:19 AM edit delete reply
My group runs the opposite direction. Value is fairly immaterial as opposed to utility. Our arguments are usually centered on who can use the item to best aid the group. At times, you have two players each arguing that the other needs it more. It's a pretty nice feeling, partially because we're predominantly players who take the adventures seriously if not the individual encounters.

That said, we're a large enough group that we have to divide our loot very strategically and the pickings are often a little slim. My character, a Swashbuckler/Rogue multiclass specializing in kukris and two-weapon fighting, often gets last pick or the hand-me-downs of other characters. The mix of fighter-ish and magic-ish characters is such that everything I would need, someone else needs too and their class needs it more specifically. I have a lot of needs to fill, but few of them are "primary" enough to give me priority over say a sorcerer and oracle for CHA or a monk or sorcerer for defensive items.

There are times, however, when frivolous in-character desires dictate who gets which items. For example, in a pirate campaign, my cleric took a protective kilt because everyone else in the party refused to wear it.
Winged Cat 9th Jun 2015, 10:14 AM edit delete reply
Star Wars campaign. One of the PCs had just tricked a Jedi into boarding their ship just before they headed to hyperspace. (Fortunately, said Jedi was going that way anyway, and was looking for a fast exit, so this was quickly forgiven.)

The party was split on whether to treat the Jedi as a scary person who would bring the Empire down on them, a useful source of training for their Force-sensitive (the PC making this argument was somewhat protective toward said Force-sensitive), or a source of mercantile information about their destination (the Jedi's home). Most of the session was spent ICly shaking this out.

And then there's a campaign I run where "negotiation between PCs" has been the primary activity, as measured by session time spent, of entire 16ish-session-long chapters. A space pirate queen, her adopted daughter/android emissary of an emergent AI, a fleet admiral who's effectively The Law since the area's been cut off from his higher-ups for years, and a superhacker and his alien bunnygirl wife, fly into the local home of an ancient alien race that has been worshipping them, and need to figure out what to do.
Disloyal Subject 9th Jun 2015, 7:03 PM edit delete reply
Disloyal Subject
If there's no volunteers for taking point (I usually volunteer if I have decent stealth) then the least-liked PC is often outright bullied into it. Gnomes make decent meat shields, and Halflings have decent chances of dodging rather than going 'crunch.'
j-eagle12212012 9th Jun 2015, 8:07 AM edit delete reply
j-eagle12212012
"Didn't think I had to specify..."

Umm AJ with Rainbow Dash you have to be VERY specific or she will find a loop-hole that benifits her (I am refering to this RD not the one from the show just to be clear)
Winged Cat 9th Jun 2015, 10:33 AM edit delete reply
RD: "Is there a maximum size contracts can be? I mean physical size, as in pages or inches."

GM: "I don't think so. Why?"

RD: "Oh, no reason. What skill would you say covers skywriting?"

GM: "..."

RD: "If you didn't think of it first..."

GM: "Ahem. So you WOULD have heard, at least the rudiments in history class, of the Great Cloud Contract War four hundred years ago. Though for a 'war' there wasn't much fighting, but this is when modern cloudwalking spells were invented. Even the earth ponies constructed great earth shooters to 'edit the clouds', which fortunately are not needed any more and supposedly were all dismantled long ago, unless a certain pegasus wished to revive that long-dead conflict and tempt fate to bring out any survivors. You're pretty sure they did at least 30 dice per hit, and by the end of the war could hit a moving pegasus-sized cumulus comma at twenty miles."

RD: "...aheh. Neeevermind."
Raxon 9th Jun 2015, 10:10 AM edit delete reply
Raxon
I don't suppose AJ and RD could do barehoof boxing in a fillie pool full of honey instead, could they?
Specter 9th Jun 2015, 10:20 AM edit delete reply
Specter
No... unless they agree, then I don't care.
Toric 9th Jun 2015, 11:27 AM edit delete reply
That fight would make almost no sense in this setting. AJ would have a definite advantage of physical strength and balance, even in the difficult terrain without the extra hindrance of feathery limbs not functioning. Additionally, RD's advantage in mobility and speed would be all but neutralized.

However, mechanically RD would have a massive advantage because of rage and barbarian builds in general, so her stats would favor making the checks to move normally on the ground and unarmed combat rolls.

Further, nowhere in your premise did you include Pinkie Pie who is obviously the owner/filler of said filly pool.

For my money, I think the event should be a "Catch the greased Pinkie Pie" to see which of them can capture the destroyer of logic. That's a real test of athleticism right there. Truly the grease is almost superfluous, but it would still be amusing.
The MunchKING 9th Jun 2015, 3:51 PM edit delete reply
The MunchKING
In 4th Ed do Barbarians still get the speed boost they had in 3.X?
Raxon 9th Jun 2015, 4:23 PM edit delete reply
Raxon
Only if they all get greased up first. It would be like an erotic version of a roadrunner cartoon.

EDIT: Okay, okay! A more erotic version of a roadrunner cartoon! Sheesh!
Digo 10th Jun 2015, 4:25 AM edit delete reply
I have mixed feelings about that. :D
Newbiespud 10th Jun 2015, 8:24 AM edit delete reply
Newbiespud
Oh boy, won't have electricity for a couple of days due to people with money being dumb. What a time to be alive.

You guys have a comic tomorrow, at least.
Toric 10th Jun 2015, 8:31 AM edit delete reply
Well, think of it like this: would you rather lose electricity because people with money are dumb or because people without money are dumb? At least the former can afford to have it fixed. My condolences either way.
Boris Carlot 10th Jun 2015, 12:06 PM edit delete reply
My sympathies. Good luck.