W34 Carousing

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John Fighter

I wonder if we could resolve John Fighter's chance of having his charm (or whatever it is) dispelled before our next session, because that will influence his carousing. Actually, since every last copper piece is going towards restoration of the Pharoah's treasure, John will not be able to carouse at all unless the curse is lifted or maybe can only "reverse carouse."

Actually actually, JF's carousal attempt before last time was not resolved — he was plowing all his money into tomb improvements, and I'd tried to gain psionic powers by exposure to those of the awesome Anubis. If he has no chance of that happening, can he have gotten new insights into the workings of tomb traps and the like, perhaps giving him some thiefy/dwarfy abilities in other dungeons?

Pending yet another thorough revision of the carousing and XP system, I'm going to say that what John Fighter has done is to bank his gold with Anubis. As long as he's under the curse, he is compelled to do only this with his gold. The good news is that he can carouse from this bank, rolling 1d12 x 200 and earning XP accordingly, up until the point that the bank is depleted. Two special carousing moves are available:

When you try to duplicate Anubis's psychic powers, roll 2d6 + Int, Wis, or Cha. On a 10+, you gain a randomly determined psionic power (likely from the Eldrich Wizardry supplement) with no side effects. On a 7-9, you gain a random power but you also become vulnerable to psychic attacks. On a 6-, your open mind attracts unwelcome attention from psionic entities. The power and/or vulnerability will be gained next time you are in danger, and last until you are next unconscions.

When you study the traps Anubis is building in the Pharoah's Tomb, roll 2d6 + Int, Wis, or Cha. On a 10+, the next time you are in the presence of a trap, the DM will explain to you where it is and how it works. On a 7-9, the DM will tell you one true thing and one false thing about the trap. On a 6-, one of your enemies learns about trap-making from Anubis instead.

Some notes: Because positive modifiers are hard to come by in the White Sandbox, and because it's hard to come up with physical carouses that aren't Con, I'm favoring saying that carouses are either mental (Int-Wis-Cha) or physical (Str - Dex - Con), with the idea that PCs with a strength in one of those three areas can find a way to bring it to bear. And I'm balancing potential psionic craziness by making it one-day-only for now.

OK, I will try one of each, and leave the rolling to my friendly Dungeon Master. Thanks!

John Fighter finds that Anubis has attracted a young priest-engineer who calls himself Nekoda, Favored of Inpu. Even Nekoda does not like to enter the presence of the god, but he often kneels in prayer just outside the open door before going to direct the workers as they build fortifications outside the tomb. Nekoda is glad to answer John's questions about Anubis's powers of the mind. "In tombs, things of the distant past are preserved; regardless of what some may say, it is not wrong to use these secrets to protect our master's interests. And the dead are sealed in tombs so that, in the distant future, they may live again; on the day of resurrection, that which will be is the same as that which was."

The silence that follows is broken by the sound of a worker dropping a block of stone. Then, a second later, the sound arrives, stirring the dust on the floor, and John realizes the first sound was only in his mind. Seeing how he reacted before the event, Nekoda smiles. "It seems that you also are favored of Inpu. Return your mind to this moment if you need to invoke his blessing again."

Discussing traps with Nekoda is less successful. "You may be faithful now, John Fighter, but perhaps not forever. And no good would come of allowing the secrets of tomb defense to pass to your despoiling comrades." One thing Nekoda lets slip seems of potential interest: he has a mixture of righteous scorn and reluctant admiration for those who, having treasures to defend, create a tomb in the vault where they will be stored so that it falls under Anubis's protection. Some have even gone so far as to make a vault inside a tomb formed out of the body of the massive dead whose soul is honored by the tomb, thus making it impossible for robbers to steal the body out of the tomb and thus render its vaults no longer of interest to the Guardian of the Dead.

John Fighter earns a total of 3,600 XP; this total is subtracted from those available for carousing from his contribution to Anubis's tomb.

Ookla the Mok

Having suffered at the hands of his own sword overly much in recent sessions, Ookla would like to return to the Stronghold of the First Principles and return to his work with the Sword Saints there on gaining more control over Thirster. He would like to focus specifically on Thirster's fear of the undead.

Incidentally, he has done this at least twice previously, focusing more generally on keeping control of Thirster. That was before the Ookla vs. Thirster table was constructed. Is it possible that his previous carousals might already have some impact on the workings of that table?

The Ookla vs. Thirster table is the same OD&D rules that have always been in effect, just laid out graphically for more clarity and ease of use. Although I saw a guy at GaryCon do it in his head with a pre-gen character he'd just picked up, I am not that hardcore and have frequently forgotten to use these rules in the past (or thought that they didn't have any chance of coming into effect when they might have). I'm going to assume that the previous carousals wash out in this sloppiness, but if you want to go back and repost the details I'll be glad to be convinced otherwise.

Here's the move I'll use for this: When you train with Sword Saints to master a sword's ego, choose one of the key situations in which an ego conflict occurs and roll 2d6 + Str or Int. On a 10+, you assert your dominance. You gain a pool of bonuses which you can use to add to your roll in that key situation, with a number of points of bonus equal to your modified 2d6 roll (e.g. 10+). Bonus points are used up when applied, but you choose when and how many to apply after the conflict dice are rolled. On a 7-9, you succeed in negotiating with the sword by making concessions in another area. You gain a bonus pool as above, but also choose a different key situation; your sword gains a bonus pool with half as many points, which it can use against you in this other situation. On a 6-, you fail to overcome your sword's will and it uses its intelligence and communication ability to make difficulties for you.

Ookla brings the Valkyrie sword-saint rare incenses which she may burn at the altar of her own sword; she accepts 100 gp worth of this incense, and he earns as many XP in observing how she caters to her sword's desires. As she joins Ookla in fencing drills and katas, she describes at length every time she has seen Zekon overcome the undead with the power of his faith, and encourages Ookla to do the same for his comrades. Thirster is indeed somewhat mollified; you gain a pool of eight points which you can add to conflicts triggered by the sword's fear of the undead. However, removing some of the blade's fear emboldens it to demand more of its wielder; choose one other key situation in which you are willing to give it a pool of four points to add in conflicts with you.


Maldoor is delighted to be returned from death and the realm of the bodhisattva statue; he endlessly spills theories about the nature of death and planes of existence. After a few glasses of wine, it is clear he is intent on learning a great deal more about "death."

As a first step, he will spend 4,000 gp (how much of a chance of success does that give me?) on researching a binding spell, a soul-net to prevent the soul's departure from a damaged body:

Psychic refuge: Creates a temporary bond between a body and soul keeping them together, even if the body dies, for one day per caster level. Since the soul remains in residence, the body may automatically be revived with a raise dead spell without a survival check. An unwilling soul may make a save vs. spells to escape.

I'm thinking this spell will be 3rd level for magic-users, similar to gentle repose in a future era of creation. As such, 4,000 gp will be half of what you need to have a 20% chance of success.

Ok, Maldoor does not have enough money to even attempt to properly research that spell. I will have to save gold. He will instead rest and familiarize himself with the new spells acquired by the party. research in the Ninth Menegril's library, trying to better understand souls and how they migrate from plane to plane. He will, as he has before, employ a coterie of librarians, copyists, fetchers, etc. to speed his research and further inveigle himself with the library staff.

Tobias the Awkward

Tobias is feeling pretty confident after having researched Magic Missile, (and using about half his income from the tomb caper) is going to try to research something different.

In the battle with the beholder, the levitate spell was kind of pointless, since it resulted him him rising in the air like a balloon, but not gain any tactical advantage. And thinking back to the pit traps in the tomb, getting across them was a major inconvenience.

Tobias will direct his spell research efforts into a version of the legendary monkey butler spell:

Tobia's Most Obeisant Simian Valet

  • The summoned ape or monkey butler is of a random size/species and temperament, and intelligence. (presumably randomly teleported from some far off rainforest and pressed into service for the duration of the spell.)
  • They must be wearing an appropriately bultler uniform/tux.
  • They can understand commands given but can't talk. They are gifted with temporary knowledge of common domestic skills (Carrying bags, folding shirts, mixing drinks,) but can only perform these tasks to the best of their natural ability. (i.e. a spider-monkey butler can't carry a suitcase, and probably mixes an inferior sidecar.)
  • They are under a geas to follow the caster's commands (within reason) for a random number of rounds. (secretly rolled by the DM)
  • Once the geas expires, their free will is returned. (and may then attack, run away, fling poo, etc.)
  • The castor may utter a word of dismissal that ends the spell, and whisks them away again.
roll d12 x2 Simian Type Who kinda resembles…
1 Spider Monkey Peter Lorre
2 Macaques Groucho Marx
3 Marmoset Bob Hope
4 Capuchin Monkey Dean Martin
5 Baboon Edward G. Robinson
6 Baboon Jerry Lewis
7 Chimpanzee Fred MacMurray
8 Chimpanzee John Houseman
9 Orangutan Jimmy Stewart
10 Orangutan Humphey Bogart
11 Gorilla John Wayne
12 Gorilla James Cagney

Tobias is willing to invest 6,000gp toward this spell, and do it as a carouse.

This sounds like a great 1st level spell, with a duration of 12 turns. Creating a table where you roll on column A to see what species of monkey you have, and on column B to see which Golden Age movie star its personality resembles, would be awesome but not necessary.

Investing 2,000 gp will give you a 20% chance of successfully researching the spell this week; 4,000 gp will give you a 40% chance, and so on. This chance is cumulative; for example, if you put in 4,000 gp this week and failed, spending an additional 2,000 gp next week will give you 60% (i.e., you don't drop back down to 20%). Let me know how much you want to invest and I'll make the roll.

The remaining choice is whether you want to do this as carousing. If so, you earn some XP from the spell research but risk complications.

Snædís Sturmsdottir

Snædís would like to go about constructing a broom of flying. She'd be willing to go to Limbo for the best materials and what not.

Snædís spends 1,000 gaining an audience with the Ninth Menegril in which she outlines her plans, and earns as many XP. Choose one of the following:

  • Beast part collector: You have all the components necessary.
  • Friend to wizards: You have a contact who can create the item to your specifications.
  • Savvy inventor: The item will perform exactly as you designed, free of unexpected quirks.

Snaedis has been able to locate an artificer who has crafted numerous magical items, all performing without error or unaticipated side effects. Teemu the Exacting, he is a six-fingered craftsman of the arcane whose time spent in the Hyrkanian lands helped him perfect his Ten-Fold Proofing Process.

Snaedis is confident in her skills of communing with some animals will help her goal of acquiring components and believes either she or someone she knows can create the broom.

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