Winter's Herald

First Encounter of a Cold Kind

PCs hear crashing noise. This noise is the sound of antlers crunching against each other. Enter in a slightly cooler (from Warm to Moderate [pg. 9, Frostburn]) environment, and they come upon a herd of Megaloceros, 4 of which attack.

Stats:

MEGALOCEROS Large Animal Hit Dice: 6d8+18 (49HP, 58HP, 43HP, 38HP) Initiative: +1 (Last, 13, 6, 20) Speed: 40 ft. (8 squares) Armor Class: 14 (–1 size, +1 Dex, +4 natural), touch 10, flat-footed 13 Base Attack/Grapple: +4/+13 Attack: Gore +8 melee (1d8+7) Full Attack: Gore +8 melee (1d8+7) Space/Reach: 10 ft./5 ft. Special Attacks: Improved grab, stampede, toss Special Qualities: Low-light vision, scent Saves: Fort +8, Ref +6, Will +5 Abilities: Str 20, Dex 12, Con 16, Int 2, Wis 11, Cha 8 Skills: Listen +7, Spot +6 Feats: Alertness, Endurance, Run Environment: Cold marshes Organization: Solitary or herd (6–20) Challenge Rating: 4 Treasure: None Alignment: Always neutral Advancement: 7–12 HD (Large); 13–18 HD (Huge) Level Adjustment: —

This large elklike creature has shaggy fur and a huge set of antlers easily 10 feet across.

The megaloceros is a large, powerful deer, standing up to 7 feet tall at the shoulder with 100-pound antlers span- ning 12 feet. It favors lakes and bogs, and can be trained to serve as a mount. The creatures’ enormous antlered skulls are popular decorations for castles and hunting lodges. These beasts also serve as powerful totem animals for neanderthals and snow goblins, who call the animals “Great Snow Elk.”

Combat Megaloceroses prefer to avoid combat, except during mating season, when males are extremely aggressive and territorial, and during the spring calving season, when female megaloceroses are extremely aggressive in defense of their young. Megaloceroses typically charge the most obvious or brightly colored target, attempting to gore and toss it, then return to trample and finish it. When an entire herd is threatened, the young males sometimes charge two and three together against a threat. Improved Grab (Ex): To use this ability, the creature must hit a Medium or smaller opponent with its gore attack. If it gets a hold, the megaloceros scoops up the opponent with its antlers and can toss it aside. Stampede (Ex): A frightened herd of megaloceroses may flee as a group in a random direction (but always away from the perceived source of danger). They literally run over any- thing of Large or smaller size that gets in their way, dealing 1d12 points of damage for each five megaloceroses in the herd (DC 18 Reflex save half). Toss (Ex): A megaloceros can vigorously shake any creature caught in its horns and fling it in a random direction. Resolve the toss as a bull rush manoeuvre (+9 check modifier), except that there is no attack of opportunity, since the megaloceros has already grabbed its foe when it tries to toss the victim. The megaloceros does not need to move with its foe in order to throw its foe more than 5 feet. If the tossed victim beats the megaloceros’s Strength check, he remains in his current square with no ill effects and is not grappled any longer. Tossed victims take impact damage on landing as if they had fallen a distance equal to the distance they were tossed. Scent (Ex): A megaloceros can detect opponents within 30 feet. The exact location is not revealed unless the creature is within 5 feet. Training a Megaloceros Small and Medium humanoids such as Neanderthals, snow elves, human druids, and gnomes sometimes use mega- loceroses as mounts; Midgard dwarves use them as pack animals. Their speed and height are particularly useful for scouts and reconnaissance of all kinds. Their gait is fast, jarring, and prone to sudden shifts in direction. Training a megaloceros requires four weeks and a suc- cessful DC 20 Handle Animal check. Riding a megaloceros requires an exotic saddle. A megaloceros can fight while carrying a rider, but the rider cannot also attack unless he or she succeeds on a Ride check. Carrying Capacity: A light load for a megaloceros is up to 400 pounds; a medium load, 401–800 pounds; and a heavy load, 801–1,200 pounds. A megaloceros can drag 6,000 pounds.

Initiative: M1, tobey, doug, m3, tim, denzel, m3 m4

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The Complex Part 1

After the Encounter: Oni-Sama requests that they go further North, away from the ‘civilised lands’. The weather turns to Cold. PCs and Oni-Sama chance upon a cave which is uninhabited and set up for the night. Overnight, it snows coating the land in snow 3 inches thick. The party enters the cave complex the next day. They find that it is inhabited by a company of Orcs guarding something for “the big boss”. The PCs successfully Bluff the Orcs into working for in their stead and taking their leave of him. However, a large chunk of ice has fallen over the cave lip, trapping the PCs and Oni-Sama inside. The PCs were surprised by the Ettin hiding in a back chamber of the room.

Combat:

(Ettin hears Party) – ROOM 2

Ettin 18, Orion 21, Krogthor 19, Opie 24, Hashar 22, Tiger 9, Toby 21

Opie, Hashar, Orion, Toby, Krogthor, Ettin, Tiger

  • Surprise Round:

    o Ettin has a surprise round, hits Toby (Wolf) for 25 damage.(Full Attack)

  • Round 1:

    o Opie cast Flaming Sphere and missed.

    o Hashar opens fire onto the Ettin. Hits, and deals 22 damage.

    o Orion casts Bull’s Strength on Krogthor.

    o Toby hits Ettin for 7 damage, and does not make the trip attempt.

    o Krogthor hits Ettin for 22 damage.

    o Ettin hits Krogthor for 11 damage.

    o Tiger misses with Claws

  • Round 2: o Opie hits Ettin with Flaming Sphere for 7 damage.

    o Hashar fires and arrow into Ettin for 16 damage.

    + Ettin falls over dead.

END OF SESSION

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The Complex Part 2
Further Into the Cave

Wo-zogah is woken by the party.

Initiative: Wo-zogah 10, Krogthor 20, Orion 2, Tony 12, Kep 20, Hashar 20, Toby 4 Tony, Orion, Toby, Wo-zogah, Hashar , Kep, Krogthor (Last to first)

Surprise Round:
  • Kep tries to poke the cloth lump, waking Wo-zogah.
  • Wo-zogah wakes up and slams his greatclub into the ground
  • Hashar successfully shots Wo-zogah for 7 damage (3 lightning)
Regular Combat Round 1
  • Krogthor attacks Wo-zogah with his greataxe, and misses.
  • Wo-zogah hits Krogthor as he goes back.
  • Kep attempts to stab Wo-zogah with his rapier and pokes his arm for 6 damage. Also, he quickly steps back and taunts Wo-zogah.
  • Hashar looses and arrow toward Wo-zogah. It hits him for 10 damage (5 lightning)
  • Wo-zogah crushes Kep for 26 damage.
  • Toby bites Wo-zogah for 5 damage, and attempts to trip. Wo-zogah resists the trip attempt.
  • Orion casts Cure Moderate Wounds and heals Kep, and he recovers 20 HP.
  • Tony takes his delayed action. Full Attack: Hits with bite, 2 claws, and 1 rake. Deals 35 damage.
Round 2

DEAD

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The End of the Complex
_Round 1_
  • Karthak lumbers over to the Dragon. Hits for 9 damage (5 of which was Fire) – 2 for vulnerability to fire.
  • Tiger tries to claw against the Dragon. Hits for 7 damage. Goes to Rake attempt – misses.
  • Hashar picks himself off the ground and activates his bow.
  • Kep tumbles through the Dragon’s space.
  • Dragon casts Fog Cloud.
  • Orion blows it away with Gust of Wind
  • Krogthor attempted to power attack Dragon. He missed.
  • Toby tries to bite the dragon.
Round 2
  • Karthak casts Bull’s Strength on Krogthor
  • Tony delays
  • Hashar shoots it for 11 damage.
  • Kep stabs Dragon for 16 damage.
  • Dragon Breaths a cone of cold and Krogthor and Orion were hit with the brunt of it for 14 damage, everyone else (except Kep) took half damage.
  • Orion heals Krogthor for 21 HP.
  • Krogthor rages. Power attacks for 5. His first attack deals 10 fire, 27 normal (37).
  • Toby tries to bite the Dragon, and fails.
  • Tony (Tiger) bites for 10 damage.
Round 3
  • Karthak smashes the Dragon’s jaw into pulp for 6 fire and 11 normal (17), and for his second attack: he smashes it across the snout for 6 normal damage. The Dragon is now blinded for 2 rounds.
  • Hashar looses and arrow and hits for 15 damage.
  • Kep tries to sneak attack, and barely misses.
  • Dragon accidentally smashed its front right claw into the ground and destroyed it.
  • Orion casts Flaming Sphere and hits it for 16 fire damage.

Dragon (Shiroryujin) Dies

(Party gets enough dragon hide to make one small size armour jerkin, 2 pairs of gloves, and 1 pair of boots.

Krogthor honors the dragon by constructing a cairn (10 RPing XP).

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Chillwind Valley

... I have this down somewhere and need to go get it. Email it to me if you remember what happened. Short story: found a "hidden" passage outside, investigated and found cleric of frost, who worships Fenrir. Party proceeds to hit on said cleric, and ice mephits are peeking at them from the rocks. Cleric of Fenrir asks for some quartz, and ice mephits ask for protection from "fire wizard", who was heading north (3 years ago). Ice mephits are instructed to find the quartz, and the Cleric rides Orion. (wild-shaped into a fuzzy Shetland pony) for his insolence. Party, followed part way out of the valley by Ice Mephits, heads toward the only village within close range. This village is to the south.

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The Town of Frost

Party finds the village as an idyllic place. Everything is kept immaculately clean, and all the people are happy. This is because they live every day in fear of the return of the Fire Wizard. He was an old Grey Elf Wizard – master of fire and contemptuous in everything he did. He had the white dragon that the party fought as a draft horse and terrorized the townsfolk annually when he came to gather supplies. It has since been 3 years since the return of the Fire Wizard. Few still know his real name or why he came to their tiny, isolated village. All magic wielders in the village and surrounding area revere frost and practice magic devoted to cold and winter. None use anything to do with fire, for fear of association with the Fire Wizard.


The bard had wanted to go to town to get magic armor, but he finds out from the village elder that they have no blacksmiths, only stonemasons and gemcutters, as they have plenty of stone in the area and some precious gems, but not much metal and nearly no timber. (The village subsists on the trading they do with farther villages, for their stonemasons are some of the best in the world – Dwarves far away from ancestral lands often come here to be apprenticed)

The party headed into the wizard’s tower. They fought 2 Gargoyles and an Assassin Vine.

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The Tower Labyrinth

Maze

Sorry you guys hated this so much. I was trying to have a non-combat, non-role-playing experience.

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The Tower Spire

The party just exited the maze into the Basement floor of the tower. They enter a teleporter and are whisked away to the 3rd floor. Beat: Swarm of Hellwasps, 11 wolves, and Fire Wizard.

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Fail

It seems that even powering up Arendaron by making him an Areana and level 8, I have utterly failed to make him into a formidable foe. I must think on minions to add…

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