Campaign Rules and Background Posts

A PbP version of J.D Neal's Lost World setting

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Rostam's Background (1)

Post Wed Nov 16, 2016 7:12 pm

Rostam, you were aboard the Ark-Ari which was headed to Salaya. (So you must have had some reason to be going there. We can work that out later.)

There was a mutiny and you were locked in a cabin. Shortly after, a pirate called Jab-Afri (who was in league with the mutineers) captured the Ark-Ari and sailed off north, but the ship was blown off course and you ran aground in a storm, on a mysterious island.

Some passengers escaped during the wreck. Jab-Afri was reluctant to have a fight with them right then and there, so he let them go, but sent one of his most trusted pirates (Saracen) after them to keep an eye on them, and hopefully talk them into coming back again.

As soon as the storm was over, the pirates quickly took everyone else prisoner (again). Since then you have been forced to do manual labor and are guarded with guns almost continually, then you sleep in the hold of the ship at night.

The first 5 days on the beach were terrible. Dinosaurs of enormous size and ferocity kept running out of the jungle and eating people. Many died.

Eventually, Jab-Afri managed to summon up a very powerful Djinni, and with its help, he moved the ship from its position on the reef, and up onto the beach in the desert. Full disclosure: he also saw a whirlwind at the other end of the ship.

Just after that, he sent two mid-ranking pirates from Siam called Kanya and Apinya to have a look for Saracen and another passenger called Sonja. At this stage he was expecting to have the ship repaired pretty quickly.

The dinosaurs do not go into the desert, so the killings have stopped since the move. However, there seems to be some strange sickness in the desert and over half the camp has been struck down with fatigue and shaking and were unable to work for about a week. A priestess called Maroo has been busy healing the sick. Perhaps you did likewise. (You also contracted the disease but you could easily have healed yourself.)

For all these reasons, the ship is not actually very close to being repaired. Talk in the camp is that it will take another 5 full days from today (It's day 15 now.)

Jab-Afri has become increasingly angry at his situation and gets violent very easily, especially if he thinks people are not working hard enough. He is a powerful magician and can summon storms and lightning if he wishes. He is also very large, and some of his men think he may be part Djinn himself. He has given up on any of his 3 crew-members coming back, and regularly curses Kanya and Apinya for their incompetence. He says little about Saracen.

Last night, the priestess Maroo came to see you and told you that Jab-Afri had just decided to sell all prisoners as slaves in West Siam, rather than trying to ransom you. You had previously hoped he would return you to Persia for a bounty, but he has given up on that plan.

Knowing this, you decided to escape. An opportunity presented itself very early this morning, when it was still dark. It was Maroo who distracted the guards for long enough for you to slip away. As you fled into the dunes, you could hear her calling out that you had gone in the other direction. She has helped you greatly.

You have walked for about four miles, looking over your shoulder all the while, and you suspect that you will be followed sooner or later. Now, you have just run into a Chinese monk, and you recall him being one of the passengers that escaped back on that first day.

Being a Paladin puts you in a tough spot. On one hand you would want to rescue other prisoners from that terrible situation. But you have seen that the pirates are powerful and you know you would be killed if you tried any heroics on your own.

Over to you...
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Sonja's Story

Post Fri Nov 18, 2016 8:15 pm

Sonja fled in the night of day 5 after failing to kill Saracen, who she disliked. She knew he had been tasked with making sure the group would return to Jab-Afri, and that Jab-Afri would not treat them favorably if that occurred.

She spent several days in the jungle between the mountains and the camp, and had several encounters with dinosaurs that she successfully outran. But then she was attacked in the middle of the night by a black pudding, and she only just managed to get away before it climbed all over her.

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She realised that the jungle was too dangerous, and like many others, sought out the desert, where she realised that animals hardly ever go.

She found the ruins and healed herself in the well, and then found the sealed doors. She used her ring of x-ray vision and saw the monkey men on the first landing, and believed they would attack her as soon as she get through the door. She decided to scrawl words of warning on the door in the good members of the party came this way.

Then she headed off north west into the desert and made a camp, but was woken in the middle of the night by a chimera, which breathed lightning at her. It was 10 feet long and utterly terrifying.

She ran, and was chased by the chimera and its mate, which was circling around overhead.

Image

In an alternate version of reality, Sonja the ranger may not have survived such an encounter, but in this version, she managed to outrun and outwit the creatures, and find a safe place to camp in a small depression in the ground about half a mile north-west of the ruins.

So far she has seen the pirates come and go from the ruins twice, in pairs. They have scouted the place not not stayed long, and not ventured any further into the desert.

She has long ago finished her 4 days of rations, and has been eking out a living shooting small birds, and sneaking into the ruins periodically for water. She has not dared to hunt properly in case the chimera find her again. She thinks their lair is in the desert to the north west.

Sonya can be on full hit points, but is starving hungry. When the party first arrived at the ruins, she crept closer, until she could see three pirates were still with the group. Dismayed, she hung back.

Upon their return, she now sees no pirates are still with the group, except Saracen, who seems to be tied up.

She decides it may be safe to rejoin the group and moves closer...

Kanya now returns to Woe. She has 32,000 exp.
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The Pirate Forces

Post Tue Nov 22, 2016 7:54 pm

(Some of this info supersedes what I have written previously).

The good news is that there are only 11 pirates and mutineers left, the bad news is that they are pretty tough. Jab-Afri is definitely more powerful than Maju, and there is a Lerini (lizard-man) pirate called Ash who who is a very good swordsman. No one of the pirates has magic apart from Jab-Afri and Kanya. Apinya is 5th level and a good shot although not very smart. The rest are all 3rd level, approx.

There are now only 4 prisoners left. The ship's captain, a sailor, a bard and a merchant's assistant. These are all locked in together in one of the cabins, right next to the captain's cabin.

The original ship's priestess Maroo and her Nubian slave have been given free reign about the ship by the captain. This is because she has been so useful in healing the sick and injured. She will heal anyone, pirate or prisoner alike.

The Ark-Ari is a large Baghlah style dhow, meant to carry up to 50 people, and was very overloaded when carrying 70 after the mutiny, but now only needs to carry about 20 as so many people were killed in the storm, or eaten by dinosaurs.

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It has been positioned about 30 feet away from the highest tide mark on the beach, facing forwards towards the water.

The whole ship is about 120 feet long. There is a small 'upper deck' area, the underside of which is divided into two upper cabins. The pirate king takes one of these, and the original captain and the other prisoners are locked in there most of the time.

There is only one lower deck (the hold). This has two separate cabins at the stern, under the upper cabins, and the pirates sleep in these, and the guns and ammo are stored. The rest of it is a large open space of about 100 feet in length where all the cargo, treasure and food is stored.

During the day, the useful prisoners (the sailwright and the bard) are put to work on the ship, and the rest are kept in the upper cabin, tied up, with a pirate on guard at all times.

The remainder of the pirates work during the day on repairing the underside of the prow, which was badly damaged. At night they take it in turns to go on watch. There are always at least 2 on watch at any time. They do not have any animals, not even a parrot.

The beach stretches for about half a mile in either direction before hitting small headlands. The dunes start about 40 feet behind the stern of the ship. Pirates go in here sometimes on patrol, and also wander up and down the beach on patrol as well. These patrols are ordered by Jab-Afri and are quite random.

This is all reported by Rostam.
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THE NEW CREW OF THE ARK-ARI

Post Thu Mar 02, 2017 7:11 pm

From day 16

The Crew of the Ark-Ari

1 - ]Maju, a magician from the Isle of Kona, who seeks his mentor's mentor in Salaya
2 - Jaali, a wandering halfling, fleeing Fark Athay for his own reasons
3 -Yuan-Cheng, a Chinese monk, on a path of penance to Salaya, where a new monastery has been established.
4 - Rostam, a Persian Paladin
5 - Maroo, a Canein priestess from the Isle of Tears, ship's Cleric (6)
6 - Nooba, a Nubian slave (F4)
7 - Elias, a Kappa cleric and NPC (6)

8 - Quong Li - The Ship's Captain (F4)
9 - Chun Feng - A Chinese sailor and minstrel (BARD 6)
10 - "Far Between", a Siamese sailor and sail-wright (0 level)
11 - Coroban, a merchant's assistant (0 level)

12 - Saracen Fhajah, a sea-elf pirate F/MU, still captive
13 - Farhan the Persian Poisoner, 6th level thief, under light guard
14 - Ash, F5, Lerini, injured, under light guard
15 - A pirate, 3rd level fighter, no weapons
16 - A pirate, 3rd level fighter, no weapons
17 -A pirate, 3rd level fighter, no weapons
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What Happened On The Beach

Post Tue Mar 07, 2017 7:46 pm

Day 1: Ship crashes on reef. Most of the former party escapes with their gear during the chaos of getting to shore. Saracen is sent by Jab-Afri to keep an eye on them. Saracen ends up joining the party temporarily. The original ships' crew and some NPCs and PCs are locked up.
Day 1 - 4: Chaos. Constant attacks by large dinosaurs on the beach. Quite a few deaths and serious injuries.
Day 5: Jab-Afri summons a Djinni and an air elemental to move the ship onto the beach in the desert as there are less dinosaurs there. He also sends Kanya and Apinya to look for Saracen when he realises the escapees do not seem to be coming back, as he anticipated they would.
Day 6-15: Waiting in desert. A sickness overcomes the party and Maroo and Elias heal it as best they can. More deaths. Pirates give up fishing after attacks by marine dinosaurs kill a few more of them. Food supply still OK.
Day 15: Maroo orchestrates the escape of Elias and Rostam after realising the pirates are close to leaving the island, and all of them will be sold as slaves by Jab-Afri. Saracen attempts to escape from the ruins and manages to warn Jab-Afri with his bird familiar before he is recaptured. Battle ensues in several locations. The party win.
Day 16 - Party reclaim the ship. Few pirates now remain.
Day 17 and 18 - ship repaired
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The Book from the Monkey Lab

Post Fri Mar 10, 2017 6:41 pm

Maju spends much of day 17 (a day later than I thought) reading the book found in the Lab. The following info is revealed:

The book is a journal that seems to cover about 6 months but there's no indication when it was written, because the date system used is unfamiliar.

It seems the desert (called "the waste") was already there by the time the journal was written.

The wizards (a group of about 6, plus various attendants) seem to have deliberately created the well, which they call "the source." This happened about 4 years before the book was written.

Their main purpose is to create immortality or at least extensive longevity. They are experimenting on monkeys by injecting varying amounts of the "source" water into captured monkeys of various kinds, and then casting variant versions of spells called Sentience and Longevity on the apes.

The purpose of giving the apes sentience was to create an army to fight an unknown war. This doesn't seem to be going very well and the journal reports that the monkeys turn out to be wilfull, headstrong creatures that always try to escape.

The "hall of the apes" is storage for part of this army of sentient apes that were fairly sucessful. These have been put into suspended animation with a spell of the same name. Maju estimates the white wizards were of great power, probably even moreso than the great Kona Mage Korinaki.

There is mention of the "quarantine" area further down in the complex beneath the ruins, and also of the "prison" area. Maju takes these to be places where reject apes of various kinds were stored. There is no map and no other descripions. There is no mention of a trapped door.

It is clear that while the wizards were here, their main form of travel was flight, and they came and went to other places on the island regularly. The "main portal" and the "main harbour" are mentioned often. Maju gets the impression the wizards were trying to build up the island into a habitable region where ships could come and go.

Various wizard names are mentioned - Joden, Grule, Find, Mankor - such outlandish names. Maju also believes that some ogres were present, being used by the wizards as pack mules and troops in case anything went wrong. The ogres had similar names.

At the end of the volume there is a series of entries in which it is reveaed that something has gone wrong with the "Temporal Experimentation Area" and that a temporary evacuation of the island has been ordered from "the homeland." The last twenty pages of the volume are blank.
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SOME NEW RULES - Day 18

Post Tue Mar 28, 2017 5:25 pm

I've decided to make a few rule changes.

1 - Coup de Grace. Any player with a weapon can automatically kill a stunned, tied, sleeping etc opponent in one round, regrdless of level. This aplpies to humans, demi-humans and humanoids under 4HD only.

2 - Criticals - a roll of 20 indicates maximum damage for the weapon type on attack rolls.

3 - Gunpowder. Anyone carrying a "flask" (10 shots) is required to keep track of these shots while adventuring. The damage when the flask explodes will be modified depending on how many shots have been used. Anyone carrying larger amounts (Horn, etc) does not need to track their ammunition, but will be exposed to full damage in the event of an explosion.

Can you all make sure your gumpoder choices reflect the new rules?

CURRENT POWDER SUPPLIES:

- Each character may have what they initally posessed in powder, full. It's up to you if you decide to carry this, or, put it in the powder stash and take a flask instead. If you want a flask, that's free.
- There is one full keg left of powder on the ship (250 shots).
- All current NPCs possess a pistol and a full flask.
- The captain has a musket and so does the bard.
- There are 15 spare grenades, a spare rifle and 6 spare pistols remaining.
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