session recap, 5/23/2013

Mongo the Fighter (4), his henchpeople "Bunny" the Thief (3) and William Harrison the Fighter (1), and his soil-bearers Malazar and someone whose name I have forgotten
Gutboy the Cleric (5), his henchman Trezgar the Elf (1) and his blink dog Rufus II

Mongo and Gutboy surveyed the giant flying stone head they had commandeered - an impressive vessel, to be sure.  But what to do with it?

Ferayn, evil wizard and former commander of the head, was bound tightly.  Gutboy regarded the fiend, and he contemplated an alliance.

Gutboy: "So, where's your city?"
Ferayn: "The might fortress-city of Tab-Nakel lies many miles to the northwest, among the hills.  There you will meet your doom!"
Gutboy: "So who runs the city?"
Ferayn: "I do. Ferayn, who sets his Exterminators among the brutals to bring death!"
Gutboy: "No, really, who runs it?"
Ferayn: "Seriously, it's me. I run it. Who else is flying around in a giant head?"
Gutboy:  "We are now."
Ferayn: (sulk)
Gutboy: "So, you interested in working for us?"
Ferayn: (laughs) "You have it backwards!  But I can see that you are a cut above the regular scum I recruit to be my Exterminators.  You are mercenaries - and there is a place for talented thugs among the wizards.  Yes, join me, and you will be richly rewarded!"
Gutboy:  "So we can keep the head?"
Ferayn:  "What? No!  I've only got the one!  The giant statue-fortress would look pretty stupid without the head.  But I can hook you up with an aircar."

Gutboy and Mongo conferred for a bit, and decided that while doing some work for Ferayn could be fun, they should probably bring Ferayn to their own evil-wizard-overlord, Feretha.  Trezgar took the controls and turned the head towards Denethix.  When Ferayn saw their heading on the controls, he began to panic - "Are you insane?  The Fist will shoot us out of the sky!  Turn this thing around!"  The pair of adventurers played out the likely ways that flying the head to the city would end in their heads, and stopped the head mid-air.

Another conference, and a new plan - they'd work for Ferayn, but first they wanted to use it to drag the giant tank out of the Livid Fens and receive the promised reward from the weapon collector Davrik Lerdingfast.  Ferayn was displeased, but being bound tight, had no choice in the matter.

Several days later found the head flying over the marshes of the Livid Fens - and it was only a matter of time before they spotted the 100' tall tank.  The might war machine was streaked red with rust, and had a tread blown off.  The turret-tower was shaped like a human head, and had a massive gun barrel protruding from the mouth.  The adventurers maneuvered the head towards an open upper deck behind the turret, and all but Bunny climbed aboard the tank - and then Bunny flew the head up into the air above the tank to await the extraction signal.

Even Ferayn had been brought along - Gutboy promised him various technological doodads that they would loot from the tank.  He remained bound, however.

The outside deck had a pair of doors secured by combination locks, and a third door that opened easily to reveal a ladder leading to hatches in the floor and ceiling.  They went down a level, and reached a communications bridge, filled with glowing monitors, and a giant God's Eye displaying nothing but static.  Gutboy began monkeying around with the controls, and a high-pitched squeal like fingers across a chalkboard began rattling their brains.  Unable to think of anything but escaping the terrible noise, the party fled back up the ladder.

Temporarily abandoning efforts to explore below, they headed up the ladder and into the turret.  The next chamber above held dozens of massive shells, leaking black fluid.  The lantern that Malazar carried flared briefly, and Mongo quickly extinguished it, fearing that the fumes in the room would explode.  They opened a hatch in the giant turret-bearing and peered down the mouth of the cannon into the swamp - but there was nothing else of interest in the room, and they headed back down.  They spent a bit of time fashioning ear plugs out of rags and wax, and headed back down into the communications room to see if they could disable the noise.

Gutboy had no luck - so he cut Ferayn's bonds to see if the wizard could figure out how to work the computer system. Ferayn managed to bring up a screen showing the tank's artillery target (a concrete bunker some miles to the east, now almost completely covered with vegetation), and then brought up another screen with a pair of numeric combinations - presumably for the doors on the outside deck.  He had no luck ending the noise, however.  The party headed back outside to see what was behind the pair of locked doors.

The combinations proved to be correct, and the doors opened to reveal their contents:  120 gp, 3 plasma power cells for plasma weapons, a ruby, a platinum torque, a laser rifle with 4 power packs, and an argonium shield with gun-notch and a shotgun strapped to it.  As they marveled at the riches they'd acquired, they noticed the noise from below had stopped - so back down they went.

In the communications center, Gutboy attempted to contact the tank's computer, shouting "Computer! Can you hear me?"  He was answered - a knock sounded from a hatch leading down.

Gutboy: "Is that you computer? Two knocks for yes, one for no!"
Thing under the hatch: (two knocks)
Gutboy:  "Do you want to talk to us?"
Thing under the hatch: (two knocks)

The hatch slowly opened, and a rotting corpse climbed up the ladder.  It had a thick bundle of wires protruding from its head and body running down the hatch behind it.  It beckoned at the party to follow, and climbed back down the ladder.  Showing an amazing amount of trust, the adventurers and Ferayn followed the monster deeper into the tank.

Below, they found themselves in a barracks-deck, with another hatch leading down, and an opening leading west.  The beds had all been shredded, the thin partition walls torn off to reveal the cables and armored walls behind, and large piles of rubble scattered about.  The corpse beckoned them to follow once again, and headed west through the opening.

Once again, the party followed.  This next chamber was the medical bay, and a gleaming white pillar with metal tentacles ending in saw blades and needles stood in the center of the room.  Suspended from the walls by thick bundles of cables were six more corpses.  Lights shined from within the pillar, and a voice spoke:

Computer: "Who are you? Identify yourselves!  Are you hostile?"
Gutboy: "No!  We are friends, here to help!"
Computer: "Ahh, good.  You are here to relieve the crew!  This is most excellent!  I have grown so lonely waiting for more crew."
Gutboy: "So, how long have you been here?"
Computer: "It has been decades. No, millenia.  No.  It has been a long time forever.  You are here with me now."
Gutboy:  "Do you think you can move again?"
Computer:  "There is damage.  So much damage.  I have been lonely."
Gutboy:  "What damaged you?"
Computer:  "The Thals hit us with artillery.  The Kaled will be victorious!"
Gutboy: "OK... well, where's the damage?  Can you be repaired?"
Computer:  "There is no damage!  There will be no repairs!  You will stay!"

Gutboy backed slowly out of the medical bay and into the barracks, the rest of the party following.  The computer began yelling frantically - "Where are you going?  You aren't relieving the crew?  You are Thals!  Thals!  Destroy the Thals!"

The piles of rubble in the barracks began to move, and three corpses rose beneath them.  Gutboy warded them off with his holy symbol of Nisus, and most of the machine-zombies ran for the medical bay.  Mongo used his Sword of Unlife to command another zombie as it entered the room.  The computer was enraged at this usurpation of its power - "How have you done this? Get out of the crew!  My mind!  No!"

More zombies began emerging from the medical bay, and Ferayn spoke words of arcane might, sending a small ball of flame tumbling into the medical bay.  A moment later, there was an explosion, and another screech of rage from the computer.  The zombies that emerged were charred and smoldering, and quickly driven back.

As the party dealt with the remaining zombies, Ferayn used their distraction to his advantage, and headed for the bulkhead door leading to the access ladder to the upper levels.  He slammed it shut - Gutboy defended the wizard, explaining that "he's just scared of the zombies."  They then heard some chanting from behind the door, and when Mongo tried to open it, he found that no amount of force would turn the doorknob.

Gutboy realized he had been duped, and ordered his dog Rufus II to "blink" behind the door and subdue the wizard.  The dog obeyed, and they heard more arcane chanting, followed by a "thump" as Rufus II fell to the floor, asleep.

And here the session ended - trapped in a monstrous ancient tank, with a wizard on the loose and an insane computer trying to destroy them.


  1. YES! This is certainly how I imagined that adventure playing out!

    Nice way to run the computers and the god's eye.

  2. Love the Doctor Who references :-)

  3. Indeed. I always enjoy these session write ups.

  4. That tank is one kickass setpiece for adventure.

  5. The tank is a quite awesome dungeon, indeed. Just can't trust those evil wizards, though.