Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Facing the Guardian (12/19/2010)

The group was intact again this week as we move towards the finale of the Well of Demons. The party had accumulated all four of the magical items (bell, book, blade, and mask) and they knew where the four magical circles were, plus there was one door that has not been opened yet. Who was the guardian? Would they see the tieflings again? How about the pesky imp and stirge - they were still flitting about somewhere as well.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Shrine to Baphomet (12/12/2010)

We started this session with Mark still out on his SE Asia trip, although as of this writing he is home safe and sound and we look forward to catching up with him on Sunday. We also started this session without the maps, so there was a slight delay as that was rectified. The party had completed a long rest and was determining which of the two eastward facing doors was the first to be investigated.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Hall of the Howling Pillars (12/05/2010)

The group was missing Mark and Scott this week, although Scott will return next week. Mark has one more week remaining with his southeast Asia trip. The adventurers had ended the previous session having walked into a room that featured pillars made of compressed body parts that writhed, twitched, and moaned. After having stepped cautiously past several of the pillars to get a better look at the as-of-yet unseen corners of the room several hands shot out from the pillars and grabbed Renny, Bogar, and Jenneth.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Hall of the Crimson Whip (11/28/2010)

After last week's tardiness issue I was resolute that I would get my blog posts done early this week but instead I got sick and spent two days in bed and two more in some sort of head cold induced fog. But despite all the external family and health issues it is comforting to know that no matter what happens I'll still make it to game night. Mark will miss this week end the next two on his trip to southeast Asia, so for the first time in a long time we will be playing without his friendly voice on the phone.

Hall of Enforced Introspection (11/21/2010)

Sorry this post is so late. Need an excuse? I got a million of them. We hosted Thanksgiving, Jacob's wrestling matches started, I worked Black Friday, and my parents stayed with us for three days. Once the dust settled and everything quieted down instead of getting caught up the wife and I went to see the new Harry Potter movie.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Pet Pig (11/14/2010)

All members were in attendance this week as the party has started moving through the Well of Demons. We left off last week in mid-combat as part of the party was facing a pack of hyenas while the other half was facing a group of Gnolls Huntmasters. After a brief recounting of last weeks story to get everyone caught up - including reminding everyone of the presence of a caged and panicked dire boar in the north end of the room - and we were off and running.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Gnolls and Hyenas (11/07/2010)

After a week off for Halloween the Sunday Night DnD group resumed play this past weekend minus Rich and Joette. They were in North Carolina for the weekend, but unfortunately they were not able to join Mark when he called in this week. The general rules for our group is that if two players miss the remainder can accommodate, but when the number gets up to three it's probably time to skip a week.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The New Character Builder Tool

Wizards of the Coast made their announcement about the new version of the character builder here. For more information Wizards has also posted this FAQ. The first link includes screen shots as well if you keep moving to the bottom of the page.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Enter the Well of Demons (10/24/2010)

Brian missed this past Sunday but all the players in attendance were happy to review the character sheets of their newly promoted characters. The party had defeated a gelatinous cube and several wraiths on their way to find the Well of Demons and had accumulated enough XP to reach Level 6. They found a quiet hidey-hole where they could take an extended rest and picked up a new Utility Power and a new Feat.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Back into the Labyrinth (10/17/2010)

Everyone one was in attendance again this week and after having survived Paldemar's attempt at a trap the previous week was eager to follow-up on the new clues found in the captured scrolls. The clues included a map showing the location of the Well of Demons, but the party was well aware that in the labyrinth knowing where something was and then being able to find it were often two different things.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Ambush (10/10/2010)

Everyone one was in attendance tonight and was intrigued by the offer the two tieflings had made to them last week. They represented themselves as agents of the Mages of Sauron and said they were fronting for an anonymous Mage that was undercover with the evil behind the duergar's plans. The Mage wanted the party to help against this evil, and to back up his claim the tieflings carried one of the Mage of Sauron amulets and they also said that they had one of the huge Bronze Warders with them to ensure everyone's safety. The unknown mage was hiding in a cave near the great hall. Could these tieflings be trusted? After all, what could go wrong?

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

The Ruined Chapel (10/03/2010)

The party had just finished off a group of duergar and a pair of Spined Devils and were able to free a group of imprisoned slaves that had been held in a pair of slave pits. The party provided the freed slaves food and temporarily stowed them across the chasm so the party could investigate the rest of the Horned Hold. Down a hall, up a small set of stairs, around a corner and down another hall the party crept on until they entered a room that appeared to have been a chapel at one point but had fallen into a state of disrepair. The room also contained that certain smell of death and sure enough, a group of wights had appeared just as we adjourned for the evening this past Sunday.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Slave Pits (09/26/2010)

After a week off the entire Sunday night gang was back, and with Murkelmor defeated the discussion quickly moved to what to do about the slaves imprisoned in the room directly to the west of Murkelmor's chamber. The already released slaves had told the party where were "devils" in the room with the slaves, but since the slaves couldn't tell an Orc from an Ogre there was some concern within the party as to who or what really might be in the room with the slaves.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

DnD Essentials

Since the Sunday Night DnD group didn't meet this past Sunday evening there is no Thunderspire Labyrinth recap this week. There is a lot going on in the 4E DnD world however and I thought I would provide some information on the new DnD Essentials line.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Inner Sanctum (09/12/2010)

The Sunday Night group was all present this week and was eager to learn how their adventurers would fare as they continued to advance through the Horned Hold. The adventurers had closed out last week with the death of the four Orc Raiders, but before that the party had taken out several duergar, a pair of Arbalesters, and an ogre before crushing the orcs. This allowed the party to be able to secure a foothold in the main section of the Horned Hold, but with the knowledge that the opposition wasn't getting any easier. 

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

The Western Guard Post (09/05/2010)

The members were all in attendance this Sunday and had quite a conundrum in front of them. They had cleaned out the first two portions of the Horned Hold but were pretty beaten up and could really use an extended rest. The rescued slaves had agreed to deliver the food packets per normal to the other slaves in the slave pens across the chasm in return for their freedom. Assuming the slaves did return and tell the party everything they saw, how could the party get across the bridge - either bridge - and into the remaining part of the Horned Hold?

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The Dining Hall (08/29/2010)

Last week the party had cleaned out the first section of the Horned Hold. Orc Berserkers and several Duergar put up a good fight and the party had expended of their several daily powers before eventually closing out the conflict. Our adventurers inspected the rest of the guard room and the workshop, found two exits, and then took a short rest and discussed where to go next.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Fight in the Foundry (08/22/2010)

Last week the party had successfully entered the Horned Hold by killing a group of Orc Berserkers that had been serving as guards. The orc's put up a tough fight, but when it got down to the last one he tried to run away, leaving the guard room and heading into a small hallway where he was slain. The hallway contained a total of five doors for the party to investigate.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Into the Horned Hold (08/15/2010)

When the fight in the Grimmerzuhl trading post ended the party looked around they saw five Duergar Guards and a Duergar Theurge lying dead on the floor. Orontor had “encouraged” this, and the Duergar Guards at the desk had invited Akta and Krstic to “close the door behind them” as their own form of encouragement, but you are conscious that you are, at least to some degree, still in the hall and subject to its precepts.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Post Gencon Reflections

Another Gencon has come and gone. I didn't get to attend this year but several of our group did and I have heard positive reports from them. Wizards posted a few days ago that attendance broke the 30,000 mark, a new record, so they have got to be happy with that.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Back in the Hall (08/08/2010)

Whether back from vacation, back from Gencon, or just out of the heat, the Sunday Night group was (almost) back together. Rich and Joette both had other obligations, but it was decided that we would carry on without them. The evening started with Brian filling us in on his Gencon trip (thumbs up!) and then we talked tech talk about Leo’s mapping program (another thumbs up!).

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Dungeon Delve (08/01/2010)

With the DM being away on vacation the remainder of the party did a pre-Gencon Dungeon Delve to test drive their newly minted 5th level characters. Here is their report (Thanks Leo).

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Maps, Maps, Maps

The weather is lovely in South Haven MI this week, albeit a little on the warm side. We had dinner with the Ohnsman's Sunday night, old friends from AT&T/Lucent who several of the DnD group are familiar with. They were happy to hear everyone is doing well, as are they, and Steve expressed his disbelief that this group has been playing DnD together for 30+ years. Steve's daughter roleplays so he is as least vaguely familiar with the concept of what we do. I told him it's just like playing APBA baseball – the social aspect of the games are the highlight, the game itself is just the mechanic that brings the group together.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

DM Homework Request

As we discussed this past Sunday night the party has been finding magic items strictly as provided in the adventure modules, plus we did some creative magic item acquirement for the characters once they completed KotS. However we have started moving into the area where each player has accumulated some amount of magic items and the magic items provided in the book, while nice, are sometimes superfluous.

Still in the Chamber of Eyes (07/25/2010)

Everyone was present tonight and a fun frolic was expected. The party has set-up an ambush in the Chamber of Eyes for the GP toting Duergar but instead a band of Bloodreaver hoodlums has appeared. Some are at the door and one is getting ready to climb up to the balcony.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Refectory (07/18/2010)

The group was intact tonight with all members in attendance. We will meet next Sunday (07/25), but the DM will be on vacation the following Sunday (08/01). Several group members will be attending Gencon the following weekend, but the consensus was that we would meet that Sunday (08/08).

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Rules, Rules, Rules

As mentioned in the previous post about changes to Magic Missile (here) Wizards has recently introduced a new set of errata, corrections, and tweaks. Scott pointed out that his Tumble power has been adjusted in a way that definitely provides a benefit to him. I am sure there are others, so if you are printing out an updated version of your character file it might be a good idea to read it over closely. As the DM I don't care which version of the Magic Missile Jenneth chooses to use for the next 2-3 weeks, but once the characters reach 5th level everyone will be issued updated character sheets then regardless.

Monday, July 12, 2010

The Shrine at the Chamber of Eyes (07/11/2010)

The group did not meet last Sunday because of the 4th of July holiday but we were back to our old tricks this night. Scott and Dave were back after having missed our previous session, but it was Rich's turn to miss (scouting!) so we were not quite back to full strength yet.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Wizards DnD Updates & Magic MIssile Changes

Wizards has released another set of updates and corrections (here). Most of the changes pertain the newly released PHB3 and the new races included therein. The usual set of wording tweaks and clarifications that have necessary with earlier releases continues to need to be applied here as well.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

DDI Tool Update

The latest version of the Character Builder tool is available for download. There are couple of new things added this month and hopefully some bug fixes so Mark's on again/off again bonus is back on this month. I downloaded it and made sure it started up properly, but haven't really run any real testing on it yet.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

DnD Encounters at Comic Connection (Oswego IL)

Earlier this year Wizards of the Coast started DnD Encounters. The purpose was to allow game stores or whoever wanted to sign-up for the program to get a small adventure arc and some pre-made characters, with the goal of playing one encounter per week for the complete 6-8 week cycle. Wizards would provide everything needed, all the stores had to do was advertise, provide the location, and run the adventure.

Monday, June 28, 2010

The Guard Room (06/27/2010)

The first order of business was the good news that Joette's father was out of the hospital and was back to puttering around the house again. The other news was that Dave and Scott had to miss this week, and while other players do an admirable job covering for them in their absence, it does slow play down a little if one is not deeply familiar with their character.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Twitter and DnD

Twitter has been around for a few years now, and while I have poked around with it a little (@rogerleemills), for the most part it seems like a lot of nothing. I have a Facebook page and this blog, so I am not immune to the lure of new technologies. After all, what is the point of being a geek if not for all the toys?

Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Chamber of Eyes (06/20/2010)

Joette missed this week because her father was ill, so we all pass along our best wishes to her and her family. Vacation time is upon us also (Dave and Scott will miss next week), but generally as long as we have a DM and five of the seven players we will carry on.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Monster Manual 3 Released plus IPhone/IPod Tools

The latest version of the 4E Monster Manual was released this week. This release includes the tweaks to the monster stat blocks that I had mentioned in an earlier post (here). Wizards also has a nice section on this at their website including a link to view several of the pages (here).

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Thunderspire Labyrinth (06/13/2010)

With Rich back from DC and Brian back from Brazil the group was back to whole for the kick-off to Thunderspire Labyrinth. There were a couple of questions about DC, but mostly everybody was interested in hearing about Brian’s week in Brazil. They both make my two trips to Iowa seem so insignificant.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

KotS Post-Mortem Discussion

Given that I had posted in the blog a small project plan before starting our KotS adventure I thought this was a good opportunity for the group members to have a discussion about how they thought things went and as the DM to get any feedback that might be forthcoming. I guess you can consider this our post-project review or a project post-mortem.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Keep on the Shadowfell - The Finale (06/06/2010)

With the recovery of Parle Cranewing and the two missing boys at the burial site the party returned to Winterhaven to drop off the two rescued boys and then continued on to Fallcrest to report back to Menos the details of their adventure in The Keep on the Shadowfell.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

KotS and TL News

Several items to discuss here as we wrap up Keep on the Shadowfell (KotS) and as we prepare for Thunderspire Labyrinth (TL). First of all each player will be leveling up their characters over the next week, so please make sure you download the latest Character Builder (CB) tool update, available today. I don't know if there is anything that will specifically affect our characters, but this break in play is probably a good time to ensure we are all on the same version. My download and installation went fine earlier this evening, although I really haven't had a chance to put it through its paces yet.

Monday, May 31, 2010

The Burial Site (05/30/2010)

That night back in Winterhaven after our heroes had defeated Kalarel turned out to be quite a celebration. Sylvana Wrafton’s Inn was definitely the place to be. All of the town’s leaders were there as well as many of the townspeople and farm families from the surrounding community.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Finale in the Keep (05/23/2010)

With Kalarel now dead the party needed to figure out what to do about all to still alive the rift. The feeling of the presence of evil that has pervaded them for the last week or so has not yet dissipated, so there is obviously some work yet to be done.

The Shadow Rift (05/16/2010)

A couple of notes to start – first of all, in the previous post I stated that the players were all back for the week when indeed this was not true. Mark had to miss, so my apologies to him. Secondly, I apologize for the lateness of this report. This past week was very busy and then I have been fighting a cold on top of that.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Cathedral of Shadow (05/09/2010)

The Sunday night group is intact again, although some of the players are still recovering from the colds they got in San Francisco the previous weekend. They have promised to endeavor on, so the adventure continues.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Character Builder Update Available

The May update to the character builder is now available (the monster tool also). I haven't loaded it yet but am doing so as I write this. I am not anticipating any problems though.

There is a lot of errata in this release - see here for the complete list. Any changes to the books of course get integrated into the CB tool, but there is a rules compendium that is being published by Wizards for release later this year. My guess is that you have to finalize your changes at some point so you can get product to the printer by a certain date so it can be shipped and released by a final date.

Dungeon Delve (05/02/2010)

This week the group was missing three of its members so the remainder attempted a one-night dungeon delve. Each delve player was allowed to role-up an 11th level character, an appropriate level dungeon from the Wizards book Dungeon Delve was prepared, and a night of fun ensued. The characters played were:

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Dungeon Delve

This coming Sunday Scott, Rich, and Joette will all miss, so instead of taking a Sunday night off the rest of the group is going to do a one night dungeon out of the Wizards book Dungeon Delve. This book contains 30 chapters, one for each level from 1 through 30, of a three encounter Dungeon, including maps, monsters, a brief story line, and even throws in several ideas for expanding the Delve into a larger plot line.

The Trap Room (04/25/2010)

The party started the evening by having moved back up the stairs out of the natural cavern area and into one of the empty rooms in the first level of the keep. During a brief respite the party discussed what to do next. The map was pulled out and the decision was made to go back downstairs to level 2 and go down the as-of-yet unexplored passageway that headed south. As to the fate of the Blue Slime ... maybe later.

Friday, April 23, 2010

The Natural Cavern (04/18/2010)

Two notes of addendum to the discussion the party had with the town leaders of Winrterhaven in the previous weeks session. Lord Padraig asked the party how much information they had been able to extract from their captives, a query that temporarily stumped the party members (Captives? We don’t need no steenkin’ captives!) After some discussion Lord Padraig let the party know that while the “kill ‘em all and let god sort them out” approach to interrogation had its strong points, he could think of at least one glaring weakness.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Back to the Keep (04/11/2010)

The adventurers finally made back inside the gates of Winterhaven, having spent the last day cleaning the Keep on the Shadowfell of many goblins, hobgoblins, and undead, and after a short detour through Sister Linora's graveyard just north of town. A happy group of villagers cheered them as they entered town, and a warm meal and a good ale were eagerly anticipated.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Custom Items in Character Builder

The party members had found seven silver and platinum dragon statues outside of Sir Keegan's tomb several weeks ago and I never added them to their character sheets. I just don't want to them to get forgotten or overlooked and documenting their existence via the tool is the best way to do this. Given that they were in an actual Wizards adventure module I had a suspicion that they might have their own entry in the equipment list in the CB tool somewhere, but I couldn't find them there.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

The Graveyard (04/04/2010)

As the final Hobgoblin Soldier took his last dying breath the adventurers quickly surveyed the room around them, ensuring they were indeed safe before proceeding on. As the quiet of the dungeon resumed once the fight had died down the discussion resumed - what to do next? Last week the party had discussed inspecting these last few rooms and then exiting the dungeon and going back to town to level up. Sounds easy enough. After all, what could go wrong (insert maniacal DM laughter here)?

Monday, March 29, 2010

The Hobgoblin Barracks (03/28/2010)

The adventurers started this week at the east end of an east-west hallway with a pair of closed doors facing north in front of them. The party had just heard these doors click shut a few seconds after they initially started down the hall, so somebody or something knows they are out here. Bogar and Krstic are at the back of the party, so it must be time to get things started.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

PDF's and Downloads

About a year ago I purchased H2: Thunderspire Labyrinth (TL), the follow-up to H1: Keep on the Shadowfell (KotS). I finally opened TL up a few weeks ago and was doing some preliminary reading in anticipation of us starting it in likely ~2 months or so. I do not have a PDF version of TL, but I do have a PDF version of KotS because you can download it for free at the Wizards.com website (here). I like being able to just pop open the PDF when I am planning game play, and I also like to be able cut/paste artwork out of the PDF to enhance our game play (and my blog), and having a PDF makes this much easier.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Leveling Up Update

Group members that have the DDI Character Builder tool have provided an updated *.dnd4e character sheet file or else have provided me with instructions for what to update on their character. I haven't heard from Leo yet, but I am sure I will shortly. There are a couple of questions still floating out there and so there may be a few tweaks yet, but we are in good shape for this coming Sunday.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Hobgoblin Guard Room (03/21/2010)

We left off last week with our hearty but tiring adventurers advancing down a set of steps in order to face a band of Hobgoblins. Leo had warned us he would be a late arrival tonight ... and did somebody say something about a spider?

Friday, March 19, 2010

Player's Handbook 3 Released

The new Player's Handbook 3 (PHB3) has been released. It includes rules for Psionics, has new races and classes, and has the long awaited rules for hybrid, or multi-classed, characters. Critical-hits.com has produced a better review than I could, so the link is here.

Wizards has been releasing material from PHB3 for several months now at wizards.com, and much of the new material for races and classes has already been sourced into the Character Builder (CB) tool. The next update to the CB in early March will include the remainder of this data.

Monday, March 15, 2010

More Fun With Floor Runes (03/14/2010)

The evening's session got off to a delayed start because the daughter and 2-1/2 year old granddaughter of Grandpa Scott came by to pay a visit to the Sunday Night D&D crew, plus we got to find out that a grandson will be arriving in May. Once we got the video connection working Mark and Deb in North Carolina were able to join in as well. Given that Scott's daughters are the oldest of the group's kids and members of this group started playing together before they were born ... well, it just made us all feel old. Regardless, a child's smile is always a blessing.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Character Builder Update Available

Mark had previously reported that he had encountered some problems when trying to level up his Cleric after he had installed the March 2, 2010, Character Builder (CB) upgrade. He had looked online and saw that the problem had also been seen by other users and had already been reported back to Wizards. I expected a bug fix upgrade at some point soon, but hadn't checked for a couple of days, and as I said it's available now. I downloaded the upgrade successfully and left Mark a text that the upgrade is available, figuring he could test it some time over the weekend.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

New Purchases

I acquired a Seagate 1 Terrabyte external hard drive this week. It was on sale at Best Buy. There are many different versions of portable/external hard drives on the market, and if a smaller size or a unique color was important than I could pay more for less space. And besides, if I was willing to pay $80 for 500 MB I might as well pay the extra $20 and get a whole terrabyte anyway.

Wizards Adventure Master Asks For Feedback

Rodney Thompson is one of the lead developers at Wizards and last week he posted on his blog (here) that he has read and heard a lot of criticism about the quality of the adventures that Wizards has published. Rodney has therefore asked for input, thoughts, and ideas from the game playing public as to what they think would make better adventures. As of Wednesday morning there are 39 responses in the comments section, some cogent, some in-depth, and some just weird.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Sir Keegan and the Floor Runes (03/07/2010)

The group is back at full strength this week as Joette has returned from her world tour. After getting her caught up on the progress the party made in her absence the night's festivities commenced. The characters had ended last week's session standing in front of a large pair of doors on the west wall of the Altar Room. After just having fought zombies and skeletons the party nervously awaited its next action.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Why Is There No Jewish Narnia?

I was perusing JewishReviewofBooks.com the other day ... no, of course I wasn't. But I did end up there following a link from instapundit.com pointing to an article as to why there is no "Jewish Narnia" or its equivalent (article here). An interesting article about the difference in writing styles and choices, specifically as related to science fiction and fantasy, from the perspective of Jewish and Christian history and culture. Definitely worth a read.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Wizards News - Monster Stat Blocks Are Being Tweaked

Yesterday Wizards announced (here, subscription required) they are going to slightly alter the way monster stat blocks are displayed starting with products released in May 2010. When Monster Manual 3 is released in June its monsters will be displayed using this new stat block format. An example is of the new stat block format is given, but honestly, without a side-by-side comparison it's kind of hard to tell what is really different between the current and the new version.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

News and Notes (Updated)

As a news note the March upgrades for the Character Builder and Adventure Tools are now available. The new source material (Martial Power 2) is included plus a smattering of fixes, this is the first substantial update following the annual Christmas holiday slow-down time. My personal bugaboo - the print limit on journal entries - is not fixed yet, but too be fair most of the open issues are for stuff that is pretty esoteric (known issues list here). As such I don't think there is anything that affects us as first level characters.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Into the Crypt (02/28/2010)

Joette is still in India, although she will be heading to London England for most of the week. She will return Saturday, which means she will be present - at least physically - next Sunday. As for the rest of us we have an as-of-yet unopened door to go through ...

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Character Backgrounds (Updated)

At the beginning of our venture into the realm of 4E I created a set of characters for us to play with and provided a one page character background for each character. Basically I just wanted to set-up a coordinated scenario as to why each of you were in this place and then once having brought you together put an assignment in front of you and then let the party run wild.

Monday, February 22, 2010

The Excavation Site (02/21/2010)

We were missing Joette this week (India!) so Rich will play her character ... missing players tend to have their characters fall into trouble. Will history repeat itself?

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Civilization 5 is Coming

Several group members have played some version of the PC game Civilization in the past. I purchased Civ 4, but it doesn't run on my video card. I did purchase a new video card several years ago, but I am so paranoid about my box I am afraid installing it will jinx my PC somehow.

Monday, February 15, 2010

The Chieftain's Lair (02/14/2010)

The group was at full strength again this week so we spent the first part of the evening recounting last week's Torture Room encounter. The party was appraised again of the contents of the room, including the room with three cells and one imprisoned goblin named Splug. It was decided the party would proceed as discussed last week, through the set of double doors facing west right outside of the torture room, to the room Splug had called "The Gold Room."

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Video Connection Issues

One of our charter group members moved to North Carolina several years ago but has been able to continue gaming with us. Once he was settled into his new digs Mark signed up for a free phone service so that he could listen in and play along for three hours every Sunday night. However, all the group members are computer geeks to some extent, so an effort was made to see if we could get establish a video link with Mark as well. We tend to play at only two locations, so camera's and microphone's were purchased and off we went.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Rogue Around the Clock

If you have ever played Rogue, the old D&D-based computer game that seemed to exist in some version on every Unix computer that ever existed then you want to read this article (here) about the origin of the game at Berkeley, how it slipped out into the wild, and the different variations that have appeared since. If you do read this article make sure you peruse the comments - some of the original Rogue code writers chime in with additional history.

PC executables and/or source code for several different version of Rogue can be downloaded at Sourceforge.net (here). Sourceforge also maintains executables and source code for other Rogue clones such as Nethack and Angband as well as other miscellaneous versions of Rogue-like games.

Monday, February 8, 2010

The Torture Room (02/07/2010)

DM Note: With Dave and Brian not in attendance tonight we decided to play on. I had character sheets for all the characters, so Scott played Akta and Rich played Krstic. Hmmm ... which one will die?

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Level Up

DDI Tools

The monthly upgrades for the DDI tools - Character Builder and Adventure Tools - are now available for download. I don't think there is anything in there particularly necessary for our current adventure, but there are always some level of bug fixes that may touch something we are not aware of. The opening splash screen lists the new material included and includes a link to the list of known bugs.

Monday, February 1, 2010

On to the Keep (01/31/2010)

The first part of the evening was spent investigating the kobold lair. No secret doors were found, but the adventurers discovered that the two large walls of foliage seen to the north and south of the waterfall outside of the lair covered additional entrances. The raised dais was inspected also and while its existence might hint at something that once was, there was no altar or religious symbols there now.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Feywild and Shadowfell

The Feywild and the Shadowfell are terms that are tossed around quite a bit in the D&D world, but what are they exactly? I found the following description on page 8 of The Manual of the Planes:

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The Kobold's Lair (01/24/2010)

After having vanquished a gaggle of kobold's outside the waterfall during the previous week, our intrepid adventurers now looked for a way to investigate what lay behind the waterfall. Maive had seen one kobold head pop out from behind the waterfall, so there was no doubt that there was something in there. Oester had crept up to the southern corner of the waterfall and poked his head in and had gotten nailed with a javelin for his troubles.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

4E Races and Classes

The number of races has multiplied quickly in 4E. PHB1 started with the standard humans, elves, and dwarfs, etc., and introduced tieflings and dragonborn. Other less common counterparts such as gnomes, half-orc's, shifters, and others have some historical context in the D&D world and many were introduced in PHB2, others in source books for Eberron and Forgotten Realms. PHB3 won't be released for several months yet but many of the new races have already been included in the DDI CB tool.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Wizards DDI Update and new Books

Now that all (most?) of us have installed the DDI Character Builder (CB) Tool there was a new update released this past Tuesday (01/19/2010). When you initially access the CB tool you should see a screen with an option to either start the tool or get the update. Whenever an update is available that particular button will be selectable. There weren't much in the way of new material or bug fixes this time, but we did just come through the holidays.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Kobolds at the Waterfall (01/17/2010)

After the battle the party drug the bodies off the road and stashed them in a grove of trees off the road. The equipment was bundled and stashed at a separate location, with Eldred taking possession of the Wyrmpriest's necklace with the symbol of Orcus (a skull with ram's horns) on it.

Winterhaven (01/10/2010)

Before moving on to Winterhaven it was decided to looks for tracks in the area. Maive and Jenneth followed tracks south for about an hour without finding anything and then returned to the party.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

First Encounter (01/03/2010)

After the meeting on the previous day adjourned you each had the opportunity to acquire any last minute provisions and to make final preparations for your 4-5 day trip from Fallcrest to Winterhaven. In the morning before you leave Menos arrives to see you off, and before you leave he tells you the one you are looking for is an Orcus priest by the name of Kalarel. He also warns you to be careful - Orcus spies could be anywhere.

The Meeting (12/20/2009)

Today is the day of the big meeting. Your patron has been rather mysterious about the purpose of the meeting on the journey to Fallcrest, insisting that you accompany them but dropping only bare hints as to the reason for your trip. You are looking forward to finding our exactly what is going on and how you fit into this.

4E Kick-Off Meeting (12/20/2009)

After some discussion early in 2009 our Sunday Night D&D group has decided to give D&D Fourth Edition (4E) a try. The plan was that once Scott’s dungeon was completed that I would run a 4E adventure, Keep of the Shadowfell (KotS). Each of the group members has at least a copy of the Players Handbook (PHB) with the intention that we would at least get a chance to page through it before we started later in 2009 or early 2010.

Gencon Trip Report (August 2009)

There was some discussion in the group earlier this year about going to Gencon. Joette, Rich and Jordan were going per usual, and this year Brian and I decided to make a run down to Indianapolis to behold the specter that is Gencon.

Background and History

Our Sunday night Dungeons and Dragons (D&D) group has been together for 30+ years, having been formed in 1978 or 1979 by employees at the Bell Labs facility in Naperville IL. It started as a lunch-time group using one of the local conference rooms, but soon moved to Sunday nights as some members left the Labs for other positions. The group is currently eight members strong, including five people who have been with the group for the duration. I joined in 1986 or 1987 … Mike and Laura M. left a few years later, Bob D. a few years after that, but we picked up Dave C. and Brian S. … our current configuration has been together for well over ten years now.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Introduction - Sunday Night Dungeons and Dragons

Welcome to Roger's blog about our Sunday Night D&D group and our foray into the world of Dungeons and Dragons Fourth Edition (4E). Some members of our group have been playing D&D together for 30+ years so I want to provide some historical background on us as a group as well as give a weekly play-by-play of our current adventure. I have been keeping notes on this current adventure in a MS-Word file and it's starting to get too big to be reasonable, so I am going the blog route.

Warning: As part of our weekly play-by-play we will essentially providing a detailed spoiler for the published adventure we are playing. If you don't want to know what happens, then don't read this.

Otherwise feel free to tag along for the ride. This is not really intended to be shared among a larger audience, so expect lots of inside jokes and nonsense that makes no sense to anyone but us.