Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Role-playing, I Strike at Thee!

There is a certain class of kids, usually fairly young, that experiments rather than role plays in D&D. These are often kids with short attention spans or a more mischievous personality, but not always. In the past, I used to classify their style of gaming as bad role-playing, but now it becomes clear to me, that I was very much mistaken and the tools I tried to apply to fix the situation were wrong as well.

I will give typical example:

DM: After exploring the dark tunnels for hours, you finally find the gate to Doctor Kierstein’s underground palace. A pitiable creature opens the door for you. It is a broken thing that appears to mix the worse aspects of a dwarf, an ape and a bird. The thing eyes you suspiciously and slurs, “Vot zo you vont?”
Kid 1: I roll Nature to see if I can recognize what kind of creature it is and if it’s evil or not.
Kid 2: I tell him, “Show us to your master at once! We have urgent news!” I also roll Medicine to see if I can fix him later.
Kid 3: I, eh, use Eleven Accuracy.
Kid 4: I attack Kid 2 with a harpoon!
DM and Kid 2 in unison: Why on earth would you do that?!
Kid 4: Dunno.
DM: No, seriously, you can do anything you want, just give me an in-game reason.
Kid 4: Okay, I hide in the shadows instead.
DM: Why?
And so it goes . . .

Are you sure this is the best time to consult the map?
Now with Kid 3 it’s quite obvious; the fella is insecure and unfocused and so turns to the words on his character sheet for guidance. After all, it’s easier to pick one of several options than to imagine a new course of action. In combat, often reading a random power from your character sheet is the right answer. Social and puzzle encounters are just the confusing bit between one combat encounter and another. In more extreme cases, I’ve seen kids whose turn has come just look at me meaningfully, roll a die and then shout excitedly, “fifteen!” More often than not, if you look under the table you’ll see them playing with their smartphones.

I have spoken a lot about this problem in the past, so I won’t repeat myself. If you’re curious, here’s a Wizards-era (aka, “before the fall”) article that covers it. Coincidentally, this article was so controversial it was even covered by io9.

Now kid 4 is a different story; his actions are not just misaimed, but also very detrimental to group morale and reek of GTA and its ilk rather than D&D. However, assuming he’s not doing it because kid 2 was rude to him this morning or because he’s a D&D bully, we must wander why is he doing it and what can we do to help him return to the Straight Path.

Yesterday, I had a chance to conduct a candid interview with a kid who plays this way, but is otherwise a good-natured and pleasant boy, albeit suffering from a fairly serious learning disability. He said that his motivation is usually curiosity over what would happen if he did this or that. When I asked him what his character’s motivation is, he replied, “Who cares?”

What I read between the lines is that his character wasn’t his avatar in the imaginary world of the game, but rather his instrument to affect this world. That is, for him, the game is not about portraying a character, but about using a character to do fun stuff without a trace of immersion, storytelling or suspension of disbelief. This would explain why some kids refer to miniatures as "toys" or "dolls," to characters as "players" and to NPCs as "baddies" or "creatures."

Now, I wonder, how to introduce them the joys of real role playing. I am not sure yet, but Pelor willing, I will be sure by the time I post part 2!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Mini-Adventure -- The Elfless Forest

Today I had to give a 45 minute lesson to some 45 children... alone. Obviously, classic tabletop gaming was out of the question. Even the ship solution wasn't applicable. Instead, I decided to let the kids play DMs and create a sandbox adventure they could later explore.

I must confess this was the most fun I had in a long while!

The location chosen with great majority (32) was a forest. Runners-up were a desert and a space luna park (which I personally thought was awesome, but meh). The titles suggested were Dark Forest, Ghost Forest and Elf Forest (even though there isn't a single elf in the adventure). Strangely enough, Elf Forest won...

Here is the adventure (translations below). This adventure was created 100% by second and third graders. Feel free to run it and tell us how it wen. Have fun!

1. Rocks that turn when you step on them and make you fall to the bottom of the earth and die.
2. Four fairies that will help you if you defeat the forest-burning ghost (8).
3. A ghost demon who is looking for his family and kills everyone he meets. He is 2.5 meters high.
4. A hovering ball that makes everyone it touches huge. It was created by a wizard who then lost it.
5. Ghost bandits who rob everyone walking down the road of death.
6. A friendly warrior with a sword and a shield. He is looking for the box (11).
7. A river of lava with a rickety bridge on top of it. This comes to mind for some reason...
8. A ghost that wants to burn the forest because she was killed by animals and now hates nature.
9. A witch's home. The witch eats children and she also has the key to the box.
10. A boy from Earth who is looking for a way home, he is very smart, but is held prisoner by the witch.
11. A graveyard where all the ghosts live. One of the graves has a box that sends you to a different world when you open it.

Friday, September 7, 2012

The Darkness Under the School

Yesterday I opened a new group in a community center. The room allotted for the game was an underground bomb shelter, of which one of the kids snidely remarked, “Now would be a good time to start a nuclear war.”

The adventure I ran with the kids was a mellower version of this. At one point, the kids’ characters were sitting in the forest at night, declining a suggestion to spend the night at a creepy mansion, and waiting until a wounded PC healed enough so that he could walk again. Coincidentally, the cause of his injury was a snide remark made earlier at an ogre they met (“You stink so much... I bet you’re the reason there’s pollution in our world”).
But you didn't have to hurt his feelings...

In the middle of the night, the kids were attacked by a gnoll gang. I decided to make this encounter more atmospheric by utilizing the terrain so to speak. I turned off the lights in the room, reducing it to absolute darkness. The only source of light was the fading illumination of my iPad.

I described how their campfire died out then I started dragging chairs across the floor while describing in a hushed tone how creatures with shiny eyes and shiny blades approach the group… FOR THE SHE-WOLF!

All in all, I think it was fairly evocative...

On unrelated news. RATS! still needs about $1000 to rise from the gutters and kill you all. Won't you help these adorable little rodents to accomplish their god-given task?

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Taken by Rats

You may have noticed that the weekly Von Schmidt chapter is late by almost two weeks. We apologize for this inconvenience. The author cannot complete the ninth chapter of his book on account of presently not having any hands. But don't worry, our top sawbones, pain engineers, medical dilettantes, and curious passersby are working even now on producing a new pair of hands that will allow him to finish his novel. The author would like us to inform you that several changes we have suggested will be introduced to the book on account of the author having a strong self-preservation instinct and aversion to extreme pain. We commend him on this decision and wish him the best of luck with all his future endeavors.

For now however, due to the aforementioned condition, we are commandeering this blog for the rat cause.

¡Viva la Revolución!

Signed, Rat
Art by Yan Clayman

Friday, July 6, 2012

Gargoyles RPG alpha version

So, I finally found the strength to translate the game I was blubbering about on G+ for the last two weeks. It's a rough draft and the powers are described only in general terms. I hope to finish it before the third week of July, when I will have to actually use it.

The game is played with sliced branches with A on one side and א on the other. Any comments, ideas or suggestions will be appreciated. Have any cool boons, flaws or sigils in mind? That's uber-cool as well!

I will be using this one with pretty young players, so don't go too crazy :)

Anyhow, without further ado, a copy-paste from Word!

Gargoyles: a Game of Dying Light
In gargoyles you take on the roles of constructs created to defend a world abandoned by its deity and after being hijacked by a cynical imposter. Your powers are considerable, but you are obsessed with defending a specific spot and are rendered nigh helpless by sunlight.

The Truth of Sophia
Thousands of years ago, the world was ruled by mages, the servants of blessed Sophia, the true deity of enlightenment and sunlight. These wise men have created artificial beings called Gargoyles to protect humanity from the Demiurge, the false deity of ignorance and fire. Elaborate sigils adorned the bodies of the gargoyles, granting them direct access to the blessed light of Sophia. For millennia, they were the defenders of the world, hailed as heroes by mages and simpletons alike.

However, despite their considerable prowess and selfless heroism, the gargoyles eventually lost the fight. The demiurge has hijacked the sun and imprisoned humanity in a prison of false light and delusion. The sun is still the source of the gargoyles’ power, because it was created by Sophia, but it also curses them with petrification them, for it was subverted by the demiurge.

Presently, the world is ruled by liars and hypocrites who worship the cheating deity. Those whose hearts are cold and souls are alienated rise to glory, while the good and the noble are disgraced and live in poverty and fear. Dark horrors torment humanity and earn its gratitude while the champions of the light receive nothing but scorn and hate. Even the sun has betrayed its most stalwart defenders.

Will you alienate yourself from this benighted world and flee the mortal coil to join the souls of the righteous in Sophia’s spiritual realm, or carry the burden of the light of truth against all odds in a world of wickedness?

It important to have mortal friends if you hope to make it through the day...

Character Generation
To create a gargoyle follow the below nine steps:
Abilities are your natural talents; divide 12 points (5 top). The abilities are Body, which governs all physical actions, Mind, which governs knowledge and awareness and Spirit, which governs interaction with gods and people. The following powers come naturally to you, and require neither training, nor Sunlight, though they may be boosted by both.

Basic Attacks
Bite: Body +2, one Body damage per success, reduces foe’s Sunlight by one per three successes.
laws: Body, one Body damage per success, you can use this attack twice per turn.
Tail: Body +4 against each foe within 3 meters, one Body damage, knocks down enemies.

Basic Defenses
Immunity: Fire, disease, hunger, suffocation, poison, most unarmed attacks. Extreme cold slows you, but doesn’t cause damage.
Toughness: Pay one Sunlight point to cancel one point of damage.
Petrifaction: Become a statue. Gain damage resistance equal to Body plus three and return one Ability point per round.

Basic Features
Glide: You can glide a distance ten times longer than the height from which you sprang.
Grotesque: You make people outside your domain experience uneasiness and hostility toward you.
Glorious Demise: When you reach 0 Body you blow up and cause six Body damage to each adjacent creature. Reduce this damage by two for each two meters away from you.

Skills are you’ve learned throughout your life; divide 9 points (3 top). Below are the most common skills, however, feel free to come up with new skills that you feel best represent your character’s unique experience.

Academia *
Computers *
Craft *
Art *
Driving *
Current Events
Iron Stomach
Martial Art *
Lock picking
Mechanics *
Mysticism *
Puzzle Solving
Theory of War *
Sixth Sense

* If you take more than one point in this skill, choose a sub category like Academia: Law or Art: Painting.

In a nutshell, this is how the world works.
Sigils are source of your powers; pick one complex or two simple sigils. Gargoyles are tougher and fiercer than humans, and their bodies are equipped with deadly natural weapons and huge wings. However, their true advantage is their ability to break through the lies the Demiurge and uncover portions of the true and blessed world of Sophia. They do this by the sigils of power. The more complex a sigil is, the greater is its effect on reality.

In the distant past there were two more levels of sigils – esoteric and eldritch, but these have been lost to history.

You give strength and courage to allies within your domain
You protect your allies from spells and evil spirits
You heal the wounds of your allies
You can detect illusions and magical effects
You can sense lies and schemes against you
You can see a person’s history through his eyes
You always act first in an encounter
You can act twice per round
You can act three times per round
You can summon a minor demon, who is loyal to the death
You can summon a lesser demon, who is very helpful
You can summon a greater demon, who is very fickle
You can feel the emotions of living organisms in your domain
You can sense emotions by looking into people’s eyes
You can command people by looking into their eyes
Your hideous visage demoralizes your enemies
You feel your enemies’ hearts with fear and despair
You crush your enemies will to fight or even live
You can go into a mad rage that bestows you with fearsome destructive powers
Your battle cry terrifies the enemy and strengthens your friends
You know the ancient war song of Sofia When sung, it unleashes solar power
You can sense through any animal in your domain
You can command any animal in your domain
You confer supernatural powers to animals you command
You can change your appearance to appear like a different humanoid
You can create completely realistic illusionary sounds
You can create completely realistic illusionary images
Your natural attacks are particularly destructive
You can breathe fire or dust at your enemies
Your breath petrifies the living and paralyzes monsters
You are stronger than any man alive
Your strength impressed even experienced gargoyles
Your body is a paragon of physical perfection
The shadows are your spies
You control the size and shape of shadows
Shadows are the lethal extensions of your will
Your skin is especially hard
Your skin has the durability of steel
Arrows and bullets are like peas for you
Your teeth produce a deadly toxin
Do you have a poisonous sting at the end of your tail
You can spit poisonous acid at your enemies
You can see a person’s dream if you have a link
You can visit the dream of people you see or linked with
You can invade a person’s dream and harm or torment him
You can alter the form of any object made ​​of stone
You can control sculptures of humanoids or animals
You can command most minerals, stones and earth
You are aware of your surroundings during the day and may employ other sigils
You can talk telepathically with those around you during the day
You can move as long as no human sees your movement
Sharp spikes grow from your body and head
You can fire spikes at your enemies
You can shoot dozens of spikes in all directions
Your wings are strong enough to allow real flight
You are agile in your flight and can make flyby attacks
By waving your wings, you can create hurricane-level wind
You are undetectable when pressed to a wall
You can merge with walls and sculptures
You can move through walls, rocks and stone objects

Flaws are the curses of the Demiurge. You get three random curses.
Dark Creation: You are particularly sensitive to light. Even a regular flashlight may blind you.
Iconophobia: religious symbols disgust you because they are expressions of the lies of the demiurge. You cannot enter mosques, temples, churches or synagogues. Sacred symbols of Abrahamic faiths cause you to flee.
Material Sensitivity: weapons made of the selected material (usually iron, silver or gold) do double damage.
The Red Fear: You are particularly sensitive to fire. Flames harm you and proximity to open flames causes you to flee.
Sick Love: your soul is linked to the soul of the mage who created you. All body damage caused to the mage's current body is also inflicted on you as well. If the mage’s current body dies, the soul immediately transforms to a new body (person, tree or life).
OCD: You are addicted to small ceremonies, such as arranging all objects according to color or insisting on polite conversation even during the most stressful of times.
Mark of Cain: You bear the mark of your creator
on your body. This causes any servant of the demiurge to target you first. Also, you feel, rightly or not, that the whole world is against you.

But at my back I always hear...
Boons are the gifts of Sophia. Choose two. You can increase this number by picking up to two additional flaws or increasing your alienation by one. We recommend that you don’t select too many shortcomings. If you’re scared of light, iron, fire, holy places, in love with a tree and cannot rest unless immersed in mud, you might find this game a tad frustrating...
Relic (3-5): You have a powerful ancient artifact blessed by Sophia. Consult with your GM before picking this boon.
Cult (1-3): You are considered a guru, prophet or god by a small group of people who live in or near your domain.
Blessed (1-4): Thanks to a special connection with Sophia, you have an increased ability to affect reality. Bless points work the same way as karma and are purchased on 1:2 basis. However, they may not be used to buy off alienation points.
Accepted (1-5): You have powerful friends among mortals, who will help you with information and non-violent actions.
Second Chance (3): The spirit of the mage who created you has remained behind to look after its favorite creation. When your body is destroyed, it will sacrifice itself to save you. You can use this power only once.
Eternal Bond (5): The spirit of the wizard who created you stayed in the world to advise and help you. It will never leave you, will never let you down. Unlike the previous boon, this mage is a visible ghost you can interact with, not a metaphysical presence.

The Essence of the character is described by two values ​​- karma and sunlight. Sunlight is used to fuel sigils, boost checks and absorb damage. You cannot have more sunlight points than you have Body. Karma allows re-rolling any test once. Three points of karma can be used to remove one alienation point. A character with zero karma finds life very frustrating and full of annoying little accidents. You start with one point of Karma.

Each sunset, a character renews all karma points used to re-roll tests and gains 0 to 5 points of Sunlight, depending on weather conditions. To gain any sunlight points, the character must be fully immersed in sunlight, even a towel can cause a character to gain no sunlight points during that day. On the other hand, even a single beam of light causes a gargoyle to immediately petrify for the reminder of the day.

Alienation measures your mutual disgust from this world. It weakens the ties between your spiritual soul and your material body. The more alienation points you have, the more unbearable is your longing to Sophia’s blessed realm.

Alienation is represented by red stamps on the character sheet. Five stamps and you turn into a statue forever. Alienation has one advantage - an alienated character begins to notice the lies of the Demiurge and see the world as it is, which protects it from enchantments and illusions.

You're ready. Go forth and conquer!

Conflict Resolution
When success is not certain, roll ability + skill (total) and count your successes. If you passed the required number, you succeed. In case of a draw the defender wins. Usually, one success is marginal, two is normal and three is full.

You may burn sunlight points to increase your total. In game terms, this represent appealing to Sophia to directly intervene in your behalf. A character left without sunlight immediately petrifies and remains a statue until exposed to the sun and the moon (in that order).

The roll is done by scattering an amount of black runes (you) and white runes (Sofia) equal to your total. A rune that lands face up (א) adds one success. A rune that lands face down (A) removes one success. A rune that lands on its side grants two successes which don’t count toward determining the test type.

Because Sophia helps those who help themselves and hates parasites, it is important to check who is responsible for the test - you or Sophia. Check what kind of rune earned the most successes and whether the test was easy or challenging. Then, consult the below table to determine your fate.

1 Woe
3 Woe
Success + *
3 Weal
1 Woe

* Difficulty is greater than 7.

Woe points may be used by the Demiurge to reduce your total, while Weal points may used by Sophia to raise your total. Five Woe points may be used by the Demiurge to buy you one alienation point. It’s up for the GM to decide when and how to use each character’s Weal and Woe points.

If you have only Sophia successes, the amount of woe points gained from this test is doubled.

 XP is used to improve the character’s traits ​​and to purchase new sigils at the below prices:
Attribute: Current X 2
Talent: Current
Sigil: current X 5
Advantage: Current X 3
Karma: 5 per point

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Filth and Flowers

Some people expressed interest in the AD&D game with the Old Guard I was yammering about last week, so I thought I'd post a little summary of the setting and events of the first session. All art is the work of the wonderfully talented Jamie Keys of Misty Albion, with whom we spent many a night designing awesome gangs.

If you're into this sort of stuff, I have some more gaming anecdotes on my blog. There are others, but I would be a lousy DM if I just gave it all away, now wouldn't I?

Games with Young'uns
Studies in Underage Vampirism (part 1, part 2)

Games with the Old Guard
Short D&D adventure with Russian motiffs
WoD adventure of romantic horror
D&D mini-campaign of republican undead
Fading Suns (part 1, part 2)

Many games, many worlds... still live in a crap house

Uldë is an ancient city of about 500,000 citizens, living in dozens of semi-independent shantytowns spreading across many miles and mixing small farms, markets, houses and crumbling public structures. Wealthier inner neighborhoods have elected magistrates and local militias, while poorer outer neighborhoods are ruled by Sons of the Dragon and Human First gangs. In the center of the city there is a small elf community living in a majestic castle called Ursgrad, or the White Castle.

Draconian refugees started flowing in after their empire was destroyed by civil war. The refugees view mammals as inferior and hate the position of cheap laborers and petty criminals they came to occupy. The younger draconian generation wants to take over the city and use it as a base of operations to start a new campaign against the Dragon Kings in the East.

No one knows who rules the city, to what state or monarch it belongs, or even how their own race is called. Most natives refer to themselves as humans, despite being a mishmash of high elves, half-elves and true humans. There is a small drow minority which legally lives under the city.

People in outer neighborhoods worship Pelor, while people in inner neighborhood worship Corellon Larethian. Both are not very enthusiastic since the sun never shines through the eternal overcast and there aren’t any forests inside the city.

Coexistence. It's beautiful

The PCs are:
Abusaire*, a racist Elf Ranger who hates Draconians
Van, cold-hearted, desensitized Elf Fighter/ Mage
Casmir, a fanatic moral relativist Half-Elf Fighter/ Thief
Gwen**, a flamboyant trickster Half-Elf Mage/ Cleric

* Means “Father of Rangers” in Arabic, sort of.
** Pronounced Gay Van

Rotten Flowers
The PCs return to their hometown of Uldë after ten years of fighting in the Dragon King wars. They have received a letter from Mother Benvolia, the director of the orphanage they all grew in, the Bleeding Heart, saying that the orphanage is in trouble and needs their help as soon as possible.

The “Sun Lizards” crew of the Sons of the Dragon demands protection money from all establishments in the Sunflower neighborhoods and the orphanage is not exempt. Humans First won’t help because Benvolia has several draconian hatchlings in her orphanage. All attempts to contact, or even locate the authorities have failed miserably. The archbishop won’t answer her letters.

The PCs are the orphanage’s only hope.

The situation in the street is dire; people are victimized everywhere. Just walking around, the PCs get into several fights defending people from draconian gangsters, leaving a bloody swath in their path. Retribution always follows, but not against the PCs, who are staying in a nice hotel in a nice neighborhood.

The PCs decide to deal with the problem legally, getting mixed in a day long bureaucratic adventure which takes them from the poverty-stricken Sunflower neighborhood with its gangs and radicals to the affluent and safe Rose neighborhood, with its dedicated militia and eternal flower festival. All attempts to get into Ursgard fail – the guards are very polite, the clerks are sincere, little elf girls hand you flowers and wish you long and prosperous lives, but there’s simply no getting in.

We accept only fabulous criminals...

Feeling challenged, Gwen and Casmir make a 100 gp bet with a Sergeant of the Ursgard garrison. They would prove to him that it’s possible to get into the White Castle. How? By presenting him with a flower from the Stone Garden. The Sergeant agrees to the bet and the duo start scheming.

At the same time, Van and Abusaire ask the Rose Magistrate to help them fight off the gangsters, but the latter says he doesn’t have the authority to act in other neighborhoods, setting of a highly frustrating bureaucratic quest, which ends in bucketfuls of flowers and numerous fashion tips, but no real assistance.

A Flower from the Stone Garden
It is possible to buy a Stone Garden flower in the Rose neighborhood, but the PCs want to get inside Ursgrad on general principle. Their main tools in this quest are a Flying Broom Gwen brought back from the war and Casmir’s Hat of Disguise, which he uses so much that no one, including him, knows how he looks anymore.

Gwen casts invisibility and flies around the castle on his silly little broom. It’s guarded by knights, golems, wizards on griffons and strange magical contraptions. The locals are elves dressed in dreams and fairy silk who do everything very, very, very slowly. He tries to fly inside, but immediately starts shining with fairy fires and retreats. Undaunted, he tries again, dodging the griffon wizards, the animated spikes and the statues in the Stone Garden, picking up a ten feet tall pink tulip, roots and all, and flies away.

According to Casmir’s extensive research, the Stone Garden flowers can only be watered with the tears of those missing a homeland they will never see again. They are beautiful to behold, but make everyone touching them extremely melancholic and homesick. Being a practical sort of half-elf, he holds unto the flower until tears roll down his eyes, missing lands he never visited. He then cheerfully waters the plant with these tears.

Gwen and Casmir are now 100 gp wealthier and are the proud owners of a rare magical flower. However, this has nothing to do with the original adventure whatsoever...

You want me to look out for brooms? I'm not getting paid enough for this shit...

Legal Justice
Van and Abusaire try to convince the local Humans First boss, Jeice, to help them fight the draconians, but he declines, feeling his boys are not ready yet and that the orphanage is not worth the risk. The local Wizard, Bjorn, while willing to give the PCs moral support and even magic potions, is not ready to risk his neck in fighting the street gangs. Talking with the wizard, the PCs discover that Mother Benvolia has some farther reaching schemes than simply protecting her orphanage, but he is not willing to elaborate on them.

Asked about it, she cryptically says she needs three acts to bring back the light of Pelor to the hearts of Man. The PCs don't press her for more information... for some reason.

Lastly, the PCs try approaching their own magistrate, only to find his office occupied by the very same draconian gangsters they were asked to deal with. Instead of getting help, they end up being shook up for some money for wasting the thug’s time.

Frustrated, the PCs massacre some more gangsters trying to kidnap a pair of young women from the street and advise the two to leave the city until things cool down. While at it, they also shoot a hatchling guilty of not running fast enough once the shit hits the fan.

Later that night, the PCs discover that Jeice and most of his gang were killed by Draconian gangsters and their pub was burned to the ground. No longer caring about law and order, the PCs round up Humans First survivors and decide to settle the score D&D style – with fire, blood and magic.

"I will ignore your problems presently."
Street Justice
Joining forces again, the PCs decide to go on all out attack on the Sun Lizards’ HQ. The attack is masterfully planned, but, as the saying goes, no plan survives the first magic missile.

The seemingly harmless elf receptionist turns out to be a draconian in disguise. The large silver bully unexpectedly attacks the PCs and alerts the other gangsters above. The battle becomes even crazier when the brazier of sleep the PCs hoped to use to take out the gangsters summons a fire elemental who attacks everyone on sight. After the battle, it turns out that Van’s plate mail armor +1 is cursed and he can’t stop fighting, forcing his friends to knock him out and discard the otherwise excellent armor.

Two humans and five draconians later, the PCs are victorious, although direly wounded and missing most of their magic items. Also, Van somehow managed to get high by applying mysterious white powder to his wounds. Now who could think that would happen...

Exploration of the house reveals some magic property of the draconians, a lot of ill-gained gold, some miserable humans with their teeth removed, some bloody teeth in a jar, and a magnificent parrot who only knows the words, “fuck you.”

"I'll save you! Just kidding... hand over your money!"

The Thick Plottens
As the PCs tear the house to bits, searching for more loot, they hear someone entering the ground floor. It’s three young drow women from the Ortagan family of the DD crime organization. They came for their toothless sex slaves and won't take no for an answer.

The PCs are nasty bastards, but not as nasty as to hand over the poor wretches to the drow, not even for a hefty bribe. Threatening words turn into magic words and soon half the group is held, while the remaining PCs force the drow are forced to flee, promising to tell their mom. That later phrase makes the group understand their foes were only teenager, and when their mommies come, things are gonna get real nasty.

However, the PCs aren't too concerned, since they are staying in the safe and distant Rose neighborhood and no one knows where they are staying, it's not likely the drow will find them. It's not like the drow are known for their mages and clerics or anything...

Next morning, the PCs wake up to see thick black smoke rising from the Sunflower neighborhood and wonder who paid the price for their bloodletting this time...

Mother of!