After a six-week hiatus, +Erik Tenkar , +Peter V. Dell’Orto , +Tim Shorts , +Joe D , and a new player Reece, playing Bronan the 3rd level fighter.

We carefully negotiate the 5% slope, assuming Bronan the level 3 fighter (yay, more meat shields!) cannot detect it.

After securing healing potions and whatnot, we head to something that looked like a New Yorker flipping a bird to the dungeon, and find a 20×20 room. With a letter in it.

We head back the other way, because as Peter says, everything in his dungeon marked with a letter is “Capital A” bad.

We need to open a door, so Rul and Mirado biff it, but Minister “he who rolls 1’s” . . . rolls a 1 to open the door. There’s glass on the floor, broken bottles and such. We search the room while Mirado waits outside for the rest of us to be teleported elsewhere.

We search to no avail, and move on.

We keep searching, find a door or three. We start kicking again, and once again Rul and Mirado wimp out. The freakin’ STR 17 Cleric/Mage kicks in the door. 

Shouldn’t you be studying spells or praying or something?No, today is legs day.

We find orange cones, yellow tape, and it looks like a storage room. We decide we’ll set up coins in a “lane change” configuration into a spiked pit, and just level up while we sleep as they all go right into the pit. What could possibly go wrong with this plan?

We go find more doors to kick down, and this time, we find stairs down!

We decide to head downstairs, where the monsters are more badass and the experience points will pile up. If we live.

We enter a room with nine guys wearing blue surcoats and mail working out, all engaged in fight training. We debate whether actually talking to them would violate our idiom. We send Reece in there to “get massive.” And we go in and talk. 

They notice us, and slowly arm themselves. One of them goes and bangs on a nearby door.

We ask if they don’t mind if we do a set? No? They summon a half-orc, who says “volunteers for the arena?” We stutter and stammer a bit. More warriors come from the south. We stall. Another voice from the back (that would be Joe D’s halfling). He steps forward. They ask what color we’re fighting for, and if not, what the f**k are you doing here?

Mirado tries to ask about the arena, finds out that this is the blue team (no surprise there). They ask him if he’s a good fighter. “Better than you,” he says, hefting his ogre head.

Oh, it is so on.

First blood or first death? Death first, shouts the halfling.

We place bets within ourselves on whether Peter gets killed. Ours is a different kind of party. 

They tie for initiative, and someone tries to cast a spell on Mirado, but he nails him with a solid hit roll and hits for 8 HP. They trade blows for a bit. They seem evenly matched at first, but we note that he’s adding +9 to his roll for level. 

“Do you yield?” the blue haasks?

“No!” Mirado shouts. 

The blue guy tags him again; even against Peter’s AC 18, this guy has a 55% chance to hit, and Peter’s dice are not with him. 

“I take no pride in beating my lessers,” he asks Mirado, who has already taken 26 HP of damage. He yields, and Roscoe (Joe D) collects his 10 cp. The foe takes Mirado’s silver dagger in tribute . . . and heals him for 5 HP. Fighter and some sort of spellcaster too. 

At this point, there are about a dozen humans, two large trolls wearing blue tabards.

We decide that we’re going to beat the trolls to death with the halfling. It’s traditional

There are four factions. The blues, greens, reds, purples, and whites. The blues are the only ones who would have spared us, and the purples are those looking to hire, perhaps. 

Mirado: We’re happy to fight. For gold.
Blue Guy: The gnome (halflng) can work concessions.
Roscoe: I just won money off of this shit, I’ll run your m********f***ing concessions stand for you.

The purples are the most likely to embrace us rather than enslave us. The blues don’t need us. 

Oh, what the hell. We’ll follow that railroad.

We go find the arena, which is impressive as hell. Rare hardwoods, stadium seating. Nothing’s currently going on.

We do a reconnoiter to see if we can get back to the stairs without crossing through blue territory. We find a split corridor, but they do join up, so there’s an escape.

We ignore the challenge of battle in the purple arena, and start kickin’ in doors. Minister heals up Mirado to 35 HP. “35HP is plenty,” says Mirado, tempting fate. We continue to explore, finding lots of variously colored rooms, color coded to the factions they belong to. We also find a betting parlor and a heavily locked door.

“Hey, hey, hey. Let’s try the subtle way,” says our halfling. He rolls 97. “Have at it, meat puppets.”

Minister casts a Knock spell, but the door is cursed, but he saves. We find lots of loot: 6,000sp, 4,000gp, 19 gems, and 2 pieces of jewelry. 

The curse would have been 1 HP per day until the treasure was returned. Ouch.

We debate leaving, because the jewelry could be worth a ton, but instead keep on. We find a statue of the God of Atheletics (who we decide is His Lord Ahnold).

We wander and explore a bit, and come to a door, and all the high-ST people and all the rest of us beat on the door, and are defeated. We pour acid on the door, and Bronan busts it open. Finally.

This is a jail, or at least cells. A giant scoprion, a bonesnapper, a clacker, a panther that fades in and out – a phase panther, and a gnome and a half-elf handling the panther. The panther is outside the cage. Yeesh.

They threaten us. we threaten back. The halfling wants to pet the phase panther. Mirado pays for the broken door, encouraging tyranny.

We move on, and wander for a while more. We find another tiny door. We go through it, and find a colony of 12 “eye-killers.” This is not good. We try and withdraw, successfully. We keep looking, and find skeletons instead. Rul pulls out his +3 vs undead sword.

The halfling is first, and he tags one for 3HP. Rul hits for 10HP. Bronan pushes his way in, and hits for 12 HP. Minister goes for the funky undead turning, which does not work.

Our halfling gets tagged for 4HP, and that’s the extent. We whittle away a bit more at the skeletons.

Next round, we kill them all, and look for treasure. We find a 2-foot diameter copper disc on the back wall, with etchings on it – it looks magical. Minister sees the equivalent of a scroll of lighning bolt, etched into the copper foil, 7th level equivalent.

We decide to hit one more door. Rul kicks in the door and finds a turkish bath.

We bail. Heading back to the surface to cash out.


So we killed two skeletons, but stole a bunch of money.

3800gp for the gems, 2,500gp for the jewelry. 6,300 gp for gems and jewelry, 600gp in silver, 4,000gp. Total is 2180gp, 2159 XP for rooms and combat. 4339XP each, bonus pushes to 4,990XP and 2180 gp.

So all in all we had a gigantic amount of fun, but it was a fairly lousy run given where we are in required XP for leveling up. Bronan does level up, though, as does Roscoe.

2 thoughts on “Return to the Mad Archmage

  1. That was our worst run for XP in a while. Gold, not terrible. We need to explore more rooms – the tougher opposition and traps on level 4 might slow us down enough that we aren't really able to explore as much or beat as much. Maybe next time we should explore a bit more, or sack level 3 a bit more, depending on who shows up. I think we need something who can chuck 3rd-level offensive spells before we can risk a fight that might have 15 guys including a high level fighter and some trolls. 🙂

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