Excellent. I look forward to reading this thread. I havent played Lost Caverns of Tsogcanth since its initial release and just remember that it was a blast.
After having the opportunity to launch a new campaign through networking on this site, I would like to share a player perspective viewpoint of the adventure.
If there is anyone else form the Pittsburgh group that wishes to contribute please do so. Anyone's feedback will be accepted and appreciated. Here's hoping this thread can send you down AD&D 2ed memory lane.
(Moderators: If there is a better place for this thread, feel free to let me know and I shall move it.)
For some further background on the campaign, you can follow the link below.
Excellent. I look forward to reading this thread. I havent played Lost Caverns of Tsogcanth since its initial release and just remember that it was a blast.
Alas, it has been too long since I last scribed my thoughts onto parchment. Be it my insatiable thirst for knowledge of the arcane, or perhaps the dulcet tones of a common life, there has been little to truly write of.
Such has changed in recent days as I have entered this town of Bissel. Several adventurers throughout the area have been tasked with researching the reason behind the dminished trade between Perrenland and Bissel. More important, we have been asked to retrieve three valuable, mystical artifacts from the Tsojcanth Caverns. These items are Daoud's Wondrous Lanthorn, Prison of Zagig, and the Demonicon of Iggwilv. The mere thought of the power that such items may hold fills my mind with wonder.
The Margrave has not been frugal with his dealings. He has provided our company of nine with sturdy steeds, a strong wagon, and several items of magical property to aid us in recovering the artifacts. We have each taken something of value from the donated items. Our spirited Dwarven warrior Flemin quickly ransacked through the items until settling upon a finely crafted axe. Our attractive human mage Vada discovered a wand of magical missiles after sending one hurtling to Flemin's behind! Our female ranger, Arocken settled her eyes on a scimitar. While Hockerbrecht, our Jack of all trades (Fighter/Mage/Thief), claimed one of the magical rings offered. I quickly claimed the other. The remaining armors and potions were claimed by our clerics Cathartic and Benedict, our human warriror Ethelrede, and our halfling thief Dunil.
As we set forth on our quest, my eyes could not turn away from the ring that I had placed on my finger. I am still unsure of the power that it yields. I have yet to feel any effects postive or negative from wearing the item. Perhaps I will have more time to discover its purpose when I return to my library.
As we crossed into the valleys of the Yatil Mountain range, our eyes were trained on the ridges that looked down on the trade route. With concern, Flemin and Arocken scouted ahead for any trouble along the ridge. An amusing sight it was to see the stout Dwarf bounding back down the ridge with a chest strapped to his back as a backpack. Flemin reminded us several times of the many ways he had just saved our lives, though it seemed that little trouble resided from above.
Our vision was limited as we navigated the S-curves of the traderoute towards Tsojcanth. After a couple hours of travel the only sight we encountered was that of a returning troupe from Bissel. It seemed as though we would be in for a rather uneventful journey until the busy chattering of Hobgoblins was heard.
I couldn't make out percisely what was being said from the many voices. Admittedly, my hobgoblin translation skills have dulled recently as I have had little oppotunity to use them. I could only tell there were several of them, and that their presence lit a fire within Flemin. With his ire raised, Flemin prepared himself to charge into action. I quickly cast Mirror Image on the small Dwarf, creating nearly a half dozen screaming Dwarves that charged forward around the corner into battle.
Flemin's charge inspired Ethelrede and Hockerbrecht to move to join him. It was obvious to me that these men would not be satisfied with using their words to get out of the situation. No sooner than a minute after Flemin's multiple selves disappeared around the bend, they reappeared racing in the opposite direction. Hockerbrecht sent a pair of missiles sizzling from his fingertips, presumably into the hide of one of the many hobgoblins who howled in pain. His attack was met with a volley of spears and arrows some which hit their mark as he staggered backwards from the blows.
As we turned the blind corner to aid our fellow adventurers, it was clear that there were many more of the creatures than originally anticipated. They moved in groups of ten and more heading towards us to aid the original three that suffered from the magic missile barrage. With a pinch of sulfur I summoned a beautiful ball of fire that blazed through the air, landing in the center of a group of ten. In the final moments of their life they squealed as the fire incinerated them from existence.
Turning again, the many Flemins charged into the front line of the Hobgoblins. While Hockerbrecht pelted them with another set of magical missiles, Ethelrede buried his Hand Axe deep into the skull of an already suffering beast. Another rank of Hobgoblins quickly appeared behind the scorched earth where the previous set once stood. Their archers rained a multitude of arrows only to have their attack returned by Arocken and her bastard sword.
Still navigating the war horse that carried the wagon, Vada cracked the reigns sending the horse and cart full tilt towards the front three creatures before quickly jumping to the safety of Benedict's steed. As Vada dropped down to the ground, there was a certain beauty to her that seemed magnified three-fold as she unleashed a fireball of her own at the approaching hoard of hobgoblins. At least ten more of the foul beast were charred beyond recognition by the searing heat.
The horse-drawn wagon bounded towards the hobgoblins striking two of the injured as well as one of the Flemin's. Only the bright ball of fire ahead of the draft horse could stop the steed from bounding away into the unknown.
Cut off from their party, the remaining hobgoblins had little choice but to fight. They were quickly overmatched as steel met steel. Many struggled on the uneven footing as the party and monsters stepped over the slain monsters. My mind had blanked momentarily as I searched for the translation of the word surrender in my memory. It wasn't until there were but two remaining hobgoblins, that I was able to convince them to lay down their arms.
An interrogation of the two provided little information. It appears that this band of hobgoblins has attacked and eaten several merchants that traveled over this passage in past few days. There also seems to be more of them as the captve indicated that their band was over 50 strong, and we had only eliminated 27 by my count.
Our young halfling Dunil seems pleased about something. Perhaps the fact that we handled the threat with little injury. I wish that I could share her sentiment, for I feel that this is only the beginning and that there are far worse threats than hungry hobgoblins standing in our way to retrieve the three items.
We ride soon. We must conserve every hour of sunlight we are afforded.
Last edited by starwolf013; 09-14-2008 at 08:23 AM. Reason: player correction
Arocken was using a bastard sword, not arrows. But the rest rocks... I wish i felt as creative tonight....
I eagerly await the next installment of Weslocke's commentary. It will be interesting to read the account from a different perspective than my own posting on the campaign thread.
I ache tonight, but all is well. Agreeing to this adventure has provided a true test for some of the sorceries that I have studied to be put in applicable practice.
We retraced our steps to a safe clearing following our encounter with those foul hobgoblin beasts. With plenty to eat and time to relax, I was able to reflect on the events of the day. Surely our actions today will assist many a traveler to Bissel.
My rest was interrupted late in the evening, as I was stirred awake by Arocken. A wide-eyed Dunil had sworn to have seen an oversized elf with a monstrous creature at its side deep within the woods. Flemin corroborated the story claiming that he had shot at something large within the woods. Concerned, I stepped forward to speak with the phantom entity in our shared tongue. I was met without a response. I am concerned with the mental faculties of some of the party. Dunil seems rather young, perhaps her imagination is getting the best of her in unfamiliar terrain. She swears by what she has seen, but I doubt she is accustomed to wilderness travel. I would expect more though from Arocken, who has continued this nonsense of an oversized elf accompanied by a large creature.
As the morning sun cast an amber glow through the trees, we broke down camp and checked the map that was received at Bissel. Much to our surprise, there was a message written on the underside of the parchment. The words have consumed much of my thoughts this evening:
the horn of Iggwilv pierces the heart,
look over your shoulder before you start,
how many sorrow foolish men,
because they didn't turn back then.
What could it mean? Was there something that we have missed in Bissel? Is this omen of things to come? Is this horn a device used to make sound or a naturally forged weapon? There are many unanswered questions, though I believe that this is a key in discovering the magical items. Perhaps Iddwilv’s Demonicon…
We continued through the Yatil Mountains with Arocken leading the way. Our progress was stopped at midday by the trampling footfalls of three large Hill Giants. Our attempted escape caught their attention and we watched in horror as they quickly clambered down the hillside towards us. As Hockerbrecht looked to make a quick escape, several other members of the party fired on the approaching threat.
As the giants approached my thoughts turned to a recent tale I had heard from a bard in another land. He sang of a comical event where a clever traveler had escaped from his larger pursuers by upsetting the ground underneath them. With the proper incantation, the temperature in my hands fell to a sub-arctic level as the blue sky turned grey. A driving sleet punished the bounding giants and covered the ground before them in a thick layer of ice.
The ice-storm clearly caught the giants by surprise as they flailed their arms to balance their large frames on the slippery surface. Yet one by one they fell and skidded towards us. The final one was carried with a force so great that it sent Flemin nearly thirty yards back as if he has been flung from a trebuchet! We swarmed on the giants as they struggled to right themselves. Their original frightening laughter turned to screams of agony as they were each dispatched by the blade. They each carried an oversized pouch of coin, most of which was likely stolen from the merchants that commuted through the area over the years.
After using the horses to help clear the path, we continued right at the fork in the road. Arocken and Hockerbrecht went ahead to scout some of the alternate pathways that diverged from the main road. Finding nothing, we rejoined and traveled to a small meadow clearing. Seeking a cavern or alternate passage as marked on our map, we began to search the area. Our search was interrupted by large sweeping shadow overhead.
As I looked toward the heavens I marveled at the image of a massive dragon, blue in hue. It’s control over navigating its flight was remarkable, as it almost seemed to hover in mid air as it addressed the party. The meadow was apparently marked as its homeland and he seemed very upset with our trespass. Much to my surprise, Arocken stepped forth and began to mimic the piercing shrieks and roars of the dragon. The dragon returned the sounds, and it appeared as if they were able to communicate. The blue dragon seemed to grow tired and agitated by the conversation and chose to exercise its power.
His jaw widened and his lungs filled. An electric blue static arc materialized from within its maw, cut through the sky, and struck the ground nearby. Arocken offered the sack of gold much to Dunil’s dismay as a payment to be left alone, but the dragon was in an attitude beyond reasoning. He began circling the sky, unleashing another lightning strike that struck one of the party. Vada turned her wand to the dragon with little effect. Benedict chanted to his deity. Suddenly the dragon’s violent, noisy fury fell silent. The motions were there, the rage existed, but no sound came from the beast.
As the others prayed and fired their arrows and bolts I cast a mirror image on myself. Though I had worried about being targeted by the dragon, my intentions were to disorient it, and I believe that I had done just that. The dragon swooped in and just barely missed one of my images with its sharp claw. As it arced skyward, I drew the heat of fire within my core and unleashed a fireball from my hands. In perfect unison, the illusion of six more fireballs accompanied the actual one. Even at his altitude, I could see those lizard eyes open wide in sheer terror as the fiery mass closed in.
The hit was solid, and the dragon silently roared in pain as its scales browned at the source of the blast. Turning its long neck, the dragon’s eyes met with mine. They carried with them a hate that could only be seen in a creature as spiteful as that dragon. Punctured by arrows and bolts and carrying a large burn on its side, the dragon swooped in again for another attack. A searing pain shot through my shoulder as the sharp teeth from the dragon sunk deep into my flesh. I dropped to a knee tearing away from his deadly grip.
As the dragon struggled to climb back to its soaring altitude, my images and I unleashed a barrage of magic missiles. Nearly thirty points of light flew from the ground, striking the dragon.
Weakened beyond repair, the dragon’s head fell limp as he fell from the sky and crashed into the side of the canyon’s wall. With the creature vanquished and dead, I was provided a rare opportunity to study such a mystical beast up close. I have collected some of the teeth, scales, and a claw from the creature for further magical research. Certainly some sort of magical property exists deep within the organic material.
The dragon was hiding quite the hoard in its lair. Gold, silver, electrum. The ground within its lair flowed with a sea of coins. Scattered within the coins was a javelin imbued with magical energy. I have also discovered a scroll written with religious verse. Perhaps Benedict will have a use for such an item.
We rest for the evening here in the lair. With the bounty we have collected and the foes we have defeated, the party has a high morale. I will feel much better once these magical items are discovered and collected.
I grow weary this evening. It has been many years since I have expended such magical energy in such a short period of time. I need rest to recover, and this bite needs to be tended to by Catharctic. I look forward to rest on this evening, but I am excited to discover what other mysteries lay before us on this adventure.
Still eagerly awaiting the up dates from "Weslocke".
Arocken waits until the feasting is done. And everyone is going to get ready for rest, When she goes to Weslock and looks at him. She stands there a moment. Her violet eyes looking at him as if deciding something. Her hand unconsiously goes to her neck, where her sash is still covering her throat. Her fingers glide through the silky material, patting it into place as she asks:
"Welslock, may I speak with you?", she says softly.
A good meal in one’s stomach can certainly go a long way. It was a rare treat to feast on the meat of such a powerful creature as that of a blue dragon. It is certainly a delicacy that cannot be found in the local taverns. These meals, these adventures… They have all made me feel rejuvenated and powerful. I can sense the power of my magic rising as well as the strength of my blade.
Our hobgoblin captive was murdered overnight. The finger of blame was pointed to many in this party. Based on recent events of racial animosity and bloodlust, I believe that I have narrowed down the few people capable of committing such an act against an unarmed captive. There is however, the presence of someone out there. Our audience…
I heard a voice speaking in elven on this day from deep within the trees. He challenged our intentions and self opinions, insinuating that we had ended the life of the dragon for sport as opposed to survival. His words were strong, unlike the high elders that come to the elven gatherings. His accent was unflawed, though it was unrecognizable. I am curious of his intentions. Was he the one who killed the Hobgoblin? Why has he not attacked us?
We continued forward by daybreak. As we navigated through the small trailways, the sound of busy chattering seemed to spring from everywhere. Hoards of yellowish eyes poured from the trees as scores of goblins rushed out to ambush us. Our party was caught well off-guard by the attack as Arocken, Ethelrede, and Benedict were all caught out of position. Fortunately, Ethelrede’s javelin throw sent sweeping electrical energy through the group of goblins allowing enough time for the rest of us to prepare for the battle. The goblins were pushed back to the tree lines and their leader called for a retreat. The battle proved to be more of an annoyance than a threat.
As we continued along the trail, the path opened to the crest of a hillside. Below a campsite had been created that appeared to hold many. Eager to meet some friendly faces, Arocken, Benedict, Hockenbrecht, and I traveled down the hill. As we drew nearer to the campsite, it became apparent that the men we had spotted from further up the road were actually orcs. One robed orc began to chant to himself as the others readied for attack.
As I turned to warn Arocken and Benedict of the situation, I noticed a frightening glow deep within Arocken’s eyes. A hideous fire of hate seemed to swell deep within her beautiful features as she surged forth with a howling primal scream of rage. Quickly, Hockenbrecht raced back up the hillside to warn the others.
The horseshoes clomped violently against the earth as Benedict and I closed in on the orcs in a desperate effort to catch up to Arocken. To impede the progress of the robed orc, Benedict had called to his deity to silence him as I hurled a magic missile towards him. The missile that was hurled at him seemed to fizzle away as it reached the orc, and he simply smiled with a yellow-stained toothy grin.
The repulsive creature smiled…
In an instant Benedict cries out in terror as he loses his vision. Blindly he swings his mace connecting only with air. I was able to clear his darkness with well placed light spell, much to the robed orc’s dismay.
The robed orc motioned for more to join the ranks and assist those that were attacking Arocken and Benedict. Humans and half orcs poured out of the tents and raced to join the fray. My hands grew cold, freezing to the touch, as I pointed them to the heavens. A dark cloud opened over the battle and hailstones the size of boulders came crushing down on the reinforcements. The robed orc’s countenance turned to terror as the last stone slammed into his chest sending him to his maker.
The strongest orcs closed the gap and attacked despite now being outnumbered. Arocken still seemed frenzied as she tore her way through each orc caring not for any wound she received. During the struggle, one of the creatures threw a rope in my direction. The rope came alive like a snake and entwined itself around my body. As I struggled to free myself, it would only grow tighter. It was unlike any magical device that I had seen.
I watched as Arocken and Benedict destroyed the remaining orcs. Hockenbrecht managed to cut through the ropes, allowing me freedom. As I checked the robed orc, I realized that his power did not come from studies of a spellbook. A “holy” symbol was draped around his neck.
A pathway had opened up from the campsite that led to an obstructed cavern. With an opportunity to showcase his tremendous strength, Flemin moved the large stones that were placed in front of the cavern out of the way. Inside the cavern were some amazing creatures that Arocken had classified as Hippogriffs. They shared the features of both an eagle and a horse. The graceful creatures appeared to be thankful for their new found liberation and flew off toward the setting sun.
We rest here for the night. No sense in letting a campsite such as this go to waste. Perhaps there are more things to discover here.
As we returned to the main road, we realized that the goblins would be waiting for us, eager to avenge their fallen comrades. Veda and I constructed some well placed webs that prevented any impeding progress of the goblins, trapping them within their lair long enough for us to move through undeterred.
We continued north, pressing forward as opposed to backward. The sun hid most of the morning behind some grey clouds.
The trade route was littered with the debris of broken wagons that marked the road like a merchant’s graveyard. So many lives lost while making simple deliveries and conducting honest business. The broken and battered wagons foreshadowed a looming danger ahead. Clambering out of a recessed opening in the canyon wall came four lanky, dirty trolls. We were spotted and quickly the horrible creatures descended upon us.
I could hear Cathartic and Benedict praying as Hockenbrecht fired a pair of crossbow bolts into one of the trolls.
Tristana sang from her hilt and I unsheathed her for battle. The trolls attack with a ferocity that was unmatched by the enemies we had previously faced. As we would bring one down, it would rise again without fail. We finally weakened the four to a point where they no longer moved. Tristana finished slicing through a last troll before returning to me. As the party cleared away, I cast a fireball to consume the bodies of the trolls. Their screams were short lived as the fire quickly ate through their bodies leaving nothing but ash in its remains.
The trolls lived in very squalid conditions but their cave did turn up some more gold. Arocken and Benedict had found it necessary to pray over the site that held the remains of many fallen creatures, humanoid and otherwise.
We need rest following such battle and we have managed to travel a little further north to set camp. The battle was fierce, but very satisfying. The land is now rid of those horrid trolls, and I feel the bond between Tristana and I growing stronger. She is helping me to become a better fighter, and our styles mesh in perfect harmony.
It is nice to rest again in a bed. Though it may not be the ideal length for an elf of my stature, it is welcomed change from the stones of the ground. We have had quite a day of discovery!
We have been welcomed into a small gnome village that was located in an area that was not on the map we had been given. The gnomes seem quite friendly and appreciative of our news of the elimination of the hill giants, goblins, and trolls.
The gnomes have extended their hospitalities to us from meals to lodging and knowledge. Through the time that I have spent with some of the illusionists in the village, I have learned of a simple yet highly effective spell that could quickly turn the tides of a battle. It involves a pinch of colored sand and a few words to emit a blinding spray of colorized light that incapacitates an enemy. I look forward to using such tactic in battle. I am sure that it will be needed in time. With every new magic that I learn, I become ever more eager to further expand my knowledge of the arcane arts. To learn the existence of new magics and magical items.
In regard to magical items, the gnome chieftan offered us some further insight on the magical items that we have been tasked to recover. Though the reports are no more than speculation and fabled lore, it sounds as if the Demonicon is a book that is bound in the flesh of a creature. The prison of Zagig is a metal bird cage which can entrap any who dare to touch it. Dowd’s Lanthorn is a lantern device that is powered by crystals. Different crystals installed within the lanthorn can cause different effects.
The gnome has also shared with us an encounter he had with a mysterious elf who was accompanied by a dog.
One of the gnomes, a retired adventurer, was able to identify the magical items that we have gathered on the adventure. The ring that I carry has offered me additional protection in battle and the potions I have found are said to increase ones heroism and vitality.
It is good to have found some helpful people along this adventure. The gnomes could prove to be valuable allies. I must go for now, the moon has risen high into the night and I must reserve my energy for tomorrow’s dawn.
i guess i interrupt wes while he is writing in his journal..lol
Alas, the player of the character of Weslocke has had a vast increase in his work schedule and responsibilities at work. Unfortunately, he didn't have the time to be able to continue the journal entries. For those who would like to read the entire events of the Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth campaign, be sure to check out cplmac's logs and blogs elsewhere on the P&PG site. I have put the entire campaign log there.