Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

The 5th Editon playtest campaign.
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EvilGenius
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Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

Post by EvilGenius »

This thread will serve to round up the previous relevant plot points and allow you to note plans on how to proceed.
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

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Status of the Dragon's minions:

The Master himself is trapped in the Donjon with the Book of Infinite Souls.
The Master's remaining servants are at Erk's Tower.

The Servants who remain are:
1) Hravja, the rakshasa
2) Alanna, the succubus
3) Khrytos, the black dragonborn
4) Balrakas, the red dragonborn
5) Erk, the gnomish rogue/warlock

Servants who were drained into the Book of Infinite Souls
1) Naziah
2) Balizar
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

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PC's status as of the end of the last adventure:

Active PCs:
Bannock
Brigga
Onarra
Quarion
Thulik

Captured, Retired PC
Mordai (damon's tiefling warlock)

Allies (at least as of now)
The Oracle (nothic with unknown abilities)
Blueberry (his ogre magi bodyguard)
Erbard (former member of Shining Justice. Some kind of fighter)
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

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What you know about the meta-situation:

The Dragon, Valos, is trapped in the Donjon and has not been able to fully take control of the Book of Infinite Spells.
....It seems that he is being blocked by pieces of the PCs souls which are trapped in the Book.
........Two of your former companions, Naziah and Balizar, who were devoured by the Book are fighting against the remnants of the PCs souls.
....It also seems that a lot of other souls and magical items which were 'devoured' by the Book actually are stored inside of the Book until they need to be consumed to power a magical effect.


It seems that you could probably safely travel into the Donjon in the following way:
....Use the area of planar instability at the top of Erk's Tower to open a portal to the Donjon
....Feed the Book of Infinite Souls at its maximum capacity
........Do NOT OVERFEED the Book, which would cause another magical catastrophe!
....While feeding the Book at maximum capacity, travel into the Donjon

It seems that you can probably exit the Donjon safely in the following way:
....Be attuned to and fully in control of the Book of Infinite Souls
....Feed the Book at maximum capacity
....Use the Well of The Worlds (which is inside of the Book of Infinite Souls now), to travel out of the Donjon WHILE FEEDING AT MAXIMUM CAPACITY
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

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Things that you still don't quite know:

What exactly is the maximum feeding capacity of the Book of Infinite Souls?
....Since magical items and souls provide different amounts of power for the Book (souls provide more), what's the ratio? This may be important when figuring out how much to feed the Book.

You've found out quite a bit about how the Book of Infinite Souls works, but not very much about what powers it possesses or what an attuned wielder can DO with it. That may be important when planning to confront someone who can, at least partially, control the Book.

Also, you don't know why the inside of the Book of Infinite Souls would look like a vast library/magical lab/alchemical workshop. What's up with that?

The Oracle hinted that one of Brigga's magical items, Boccob's Encyclopedia, may be similar in some way to the Book of Infinite Souls.
....You also notice that another magical item that you had recovered, Boccob's Index, is similar in design aesthetic and name to Boccob's Encylopedia, and has complimentary functions.
........Boccob's Encyclopedia acts as a spellbook.
........Boccob's Index acts as spell scrolls.
....How are they related to the Book of Infinite Souls, if at all?
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

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Remaining, possible sources of knowledge:

Bern Haupt's trapped soul in Haupt's Journal. Maybe Hravja told him some other things?

The Oracle - He tipped you to the possible link between items you own and the Book of Infinite Souls. What more does he know? (And what more does he want?)

Esoteric Pneuma - A copy of a copy of a copy of the journal of the Sueloese mage, Kossoth the Greedy, who created the Book of Infinite Souls. This book was last known to be in Erk's possession. Maybe it is still in his possession? Or at Erk's Tower?
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

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Also, everybody LEVEL UP!! :D :D

For planning purposes, this will be the final level bump of the HoD campaign. So make it count! :)
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

Post by NukeHavoc »

Brigga shares what she knows about the Enyclopedia:

Boccob’s Encyclopedia: This is a weighty spellbook. It has a deep purple colored and in the middle of the front cover is a glowing silver rune that mysteriously changes shape while you watch it. You open the book to find fine, thick vellum, and on the first page, you see a spell description and formula. Strangely, as you examine it, the formula on the page seems to change itself until it seems that the spell inscribed is in your own personal notation! You could prepare this spell as though it were written by you in your own spellbook!

Boccob’s Encyclopedia is a great boon to Wizards. When a Wizard finds a spell (either an arcane spell scroll or a wizard’s spellbook), the Encyclopedia reveals a version of that spell in a format usable by its owner, without requiring any expenditure of gold or of time, and with no chance of failure.

Additionally, a wizard may choose to provide the standard time and cost of transcribing a spell into a spellbook (2 hours and 50gp per level of the spell, typically) to add an unknown spell to the book. While adding the unknown spell, the wizard enters a trancelike state, which feels almost like being controlled by a celestial being. The wizard retains normal awareness of his/her surroundings and can choose to end the transcription early, if necessary. If the transcribing process is interrupted, all material costs are fully consumed and unrecoverable, but the process fails and the partial transcription fades from the pages of the Encyclopedia.

If the transcription process is completed, a new spell appears in the Encyclopedia. This new spell will be a spell that the transcribing character doesn’t know, and maybe a unique spell, an arcane version of another spellcasting class’s spell, or merely an unknown standard spell. Whatever spell is entered into the Encyclopedia in this way may be cast as a ritual, even if it is not normally a ritual spell.

The Encyclopedia does not seem to have a limit on the number of spells that may be contained within it. However, when first discovered, the Encyclopedia will invariably only have a few spells in it, if any at all. If the Encyclopedia is passed to another spellcaster, most of the spells within fade within one round. When found, the Encyclopedia will have 0-3 spells of 1-4th level in it.

Currently, the Encyclopedia contains Protection from Good and Evil (1st level), Dispel Magic (3rd level), Glyph of Warding (3rd), Banishment (4th), Stoneskin (4th).
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

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A New Ally ….

Haupt’s Journal glows even brighter for a second, pages flipping back and forth as though caught in a massive storm, then there is a small explosion, pushing you all away from the book. The magical pages burst outward, briefly swirling around you before dissolving into nothing, leaving only a little smear of foul smelling, oily residue on everything they touched.

You all blink in confusion at the unexpected results, then take a nervous step back as a dark humanoid shape rises from the remains of Haupt’s Journal. The incorporeal form briefly looks at you and you see Bern’s face, a study in righteous fury. “I! Will! HAVE VENGENCE!!!”
The ground churns beneath you nearby and a skeletal hand bursts from the earth. You ready weapons as a clearly undead form pulls itself from the ground. You have all seen various undead monstrosities, but this seems somehow different. In a flash, the incorporeal form rushes to surround the skeleton.

Then the empty covers of Haupt’s Journal fly to the creature, enlarging somewhat and encasing the skeletal skull and some of its hollow chest. As the red leather conforms to the skull beneath, it takes on the familiar visage of Bern Haupt, who looks at you with empty eye sockets. Bern’s raspy-yet-angry voice issues from the skeletal form. “You have freed me from the rakshasa’s torment, friends. I know you oppose the fiend, too. I will help you destroy him. Or you will help me. Either way, Vengeance will be mine!” Bern’s gaze turns to what Bannock and Brigga both instinctively identify as West-SouthWest, and he points a bony finger. “The rakshasa is that way. At least a week’s journey.”

Beltane’s voice is heavy with conflicting emotions. “Father! JusticeSeeker told me that a holy thing may happen here this night! I never imagined you would be returned to us to seek your Vengeance. But I offer you this gift, to help your Holy Mission.”

Beltane reverently sinks to one knee, offering up the shining blade of JusticeSeeker to Bern’s skeletal form. Bern’s bony hands hesitantly reach out to grasp the hilt and he lifts the holy blade from his daughter’s hands. A bright glow briefly envelops Bern, fading away to reveal a more substantial form. Bern now resembles a well preserved zombie rather than a skeleton.

“Daughter”, Bern intones in a much more solid sounding voice. “I have given you ample reason to hate and resent me, and to seek your own Vengeance upon me, on your own behalf and on your sisters’.”

Beltane rises to stand in front of her father, head held high. “I have no quarrel with you, father, nor does Akriah. We grew to understand you, and we know the support you gave to the tiefling community, both openly and secretly. We forgave you long ago, as did Leigha and Gwendolyn.”

Bern’s gaze softens. “Very well, daughter. Your forgiveness frees me to focus solely on my quarry.” Bern looks at all of you, yellowy-red eyes holding your gaze. “Come, let us depart! We need to destroy the fiend!!”
Last edited by EvilGenius on Mon Mar 16, 2020 11:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

Post by EvilGenius »

Regeneration. The revenant regains 10 hit points at the start of its turn. If the revenant takes fire or radiant damage, this trait doesn't function at the start of the revenant's next turn. The revenant's body is destroyed only if it starts its turn with 0 hit points and doesn't regenerate.

Rejuvenation. When the revenant's body is destroyed, its soul lingers. After 24 hours, the soul inhabits and animates another corpse on the same plane of existence and regains all its hit points. While the soul is bodiless, a wish spell can be used to force the soul to go to the afterlife and not return.

Turn Immunity. The revenant is immune to effects that turn undead.

Vengeful Tracker. The revenant knows the distance to and direction of any creature against which it seeks revenge, even if the creature and the revenant are on different planes of existence. If the creature being tracked by the revenant dies, the revenant knows.

Fighting Style: Dueling. Bern Haupt gains a +2 to damage.

Vengeful Zeal: When confronting Hravja, Bern Haupt's multiattack increases to 3 attacks per round.

Actions
Multiattack. Bern Haupt makes two long sword attacks with JusticeSeeker.

Action Melee Attack. JusticeSeeker (longsword) Melee Weapon Attack: +9 to hit (with advantage vs murderers), reach 5ft., Hit: 12 (1d8 + 8 ) slashing damage. If the target is a creature against which the revenant has sworn vengeance, the target takes an extra 14 (4d6) slashing damage. Instead of dealing damage, the revenant can grapple the target (escape DC 14) provided the target is Large or smaller.

Vengeful Glare. The revenant targets one creature it can see within 30 feet of it and against which it has sworn vengeance. The target must make a DC 15 Wisdom saving throw. On a failure, the target is paralyzed until the revenant deals damage to it, or until the end of the revenant's next turn. When the paralysis ends, the target is frightened of the revenant for 1 minute. The frightened target can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, with disadvantage if it can see the revenant, ending the frightened condition on itself on a success.

Reactions
Riposte. When a creature misses Bern Haupt with a melee attack, Bern can use his reaction and make a melee weapon attack against the creature. If you hit, you add 5 (1d10) to the attack's damage roll.
Last edited by EvilGenius on Mon Mar 16, 2020 11:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

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From your scrying/spying:

Studying Esoteric Pneuma reveals that the Book of Infinite Souls can consume 12 'units' or 'charges' per round.

Absorbing the soul of a sentient creature provides 3 'charges'
Absorbing an uncommon magical item provides 1 'charge'
Absorbing a rare magical item provides 2 'charges'
Absorbing a very rare magical item provides 3 'charges'
Absorbing a legendary magical item provides 4 'charges'
Absorbing an artifact may or may not be possible.
Last edited by EvilGenius on Tue May 19, 2020 1:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

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Fey Draughts

Minor Draughts
1. Refresh – choose one racial ability, class ability or character ability that refreshes after a short rest. You regain that ability as though you had taken a short rest. Cannot benefit from this draught again until completing a long rest (taking a draught that refreshes an ability that refreshes on a long rest does NOT count).
Greater Draughts
1. Rejuvinate – choose one racial ability, class ability or character ability that refreshes after a long rest. You regain that ability as though you had taken a long rest. Cannot benefit from this draught again until actually completing a long rest.

Each PC should have 2 Minor and 1 Greater Draught.
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

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Last session, the PCs breached the lowest level of the tower. Finding it abandoned, everyone cautiously started up the tower stairs, only to run straight into an area where the fabric between worlds had thinned so much that everyone accidentally fell through reality into a the Astral plane!

Finding themselves on a small chunk of floating rock everyone took stock of the situation. The rock they were on had several architectural pillars and a partial marble floor. There were also several small rocks leading to a larger chunk of rock nearby, like rocks in a stream, though in this case, there was only the emptiness of the void below them. But the larger nearby rock drew everyone's attention immediately due to the large and stable portal that promised a way back home. And also because of the illithid and his githyanki thralls!

The PCs engaged the rest of the illithid's thralls, intellect devoureres and some ogres and half ogres. Brigga utilized her Dwarven Thrower to deadly effect, destroying most of the intellect devourers in one turn, while Bannock and Onarra slew the ogres and half ogres and Quarion freed the githyanki from the illithid's mental domination.

Seeing his thralls destroyed or freed, the illithid fled, leaving the PCs in control of the small island and the open portal.
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

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The PCs used the portal to return to Oerth, finding themselves at the top of the stairs to the next level of the Tower. This level was very warm, and featured several large braziers with impressively hot fires. The PCs also found the flameskulls they had encountered previously, all former henchmen of the PCs, and the succubus, Allana. The PCs fought off the skulls and the succubus, and even discovered that the four large, comfy looking beds were in fact fiendish mimics (they erupted in hellish flame when trying to eat someone).

After defeating all of the foes, the PCs searched for a way out of this level. The stairs were blocked by some strange rock that didn't look native to the area. Deciding to search the rest of the tower, Quarion flew to the high, vaulted ceiling, where he was sucked into another planar instability. Alarmed, the rest of the PCs found ways to fly up to, and through, the portal.

All of the PCs found themselves in a burning hot, iron fortress. They began to cautiously explore their surroundings and were quickly beset by dozens of powerful demons, who surrounded a familiar glowing portal. Deciding not to waste time with the fiendish host, the PCs made for the portal with all haste and dove through, to the frustrated screams of the demons. However, in the mad dash to make it through the portal, Onarra was not able to get her Shield Guardian, Lil' Buddy, to the portal with her, and the powerful defender was lost to the demonic forces.

Upon returning to the Tower, the PCs ascended to the next level, a stately library with several esoteric globes as decorations. There was also a sinister looking black portal, with small tendrils of darkness constantly reaching out and grasping at the air. At their arrival, an elegant, noble looking man stood up from one of the high backed leather chairs, calmly putting down his book. The man looked at the PCs with curiosity and said, 'I see the time has come. You are here for the dragon, yes? He is expecting you, of course, as are his other servants. They await you above."

The PCs noticed the man's sharp canine teeth when he spoke. The man smiled at them with a sinister air. "Yes, I am a vampire, as you suspect. But I do not wish to stop you. My arrangement with the Dragon has been one of convenience. Once he has the soul, I am given the body to feed upon. And sometimes I get his sacrifices first, to drain them while they still live, then he takes their souls. It has been .... mutually beneficial. And quite efficient!" The monster laughs at your discomfiture, and gestures toward the portal. You must pass through there to continue on. I have no wish to stop you."

The PCs cautiously moved to and then into the portal. Bannock was the last through, guarding against treachery. As he began to back into the Portal, the Vampire made his move. In an eyeblink the monster was behind Bannock, sinking his teeth into Bannock's neck and taking a long drink from the ranger. Just as Bannock was beginning to react, the vampire stopped drinking and whispered something cryptic in Bannock's ear, then threw him bodily through the portal.

Bannock landed with a thud on the other side of the portal, behind his companions. They found themselves in a bleak hallway that smelled of death, decay and old blood. Moving further into the complex, the PCs found a combination tomb/temple. Rather than spend time exploring the entire complex, Quarion searched within for the feeling of the portals and guided the PCs to a specific part of the complex.

On their way, the PCs fought off several vampire spawn and found/sprung several wicked traps, but eventually they found an ornate coffin in a place of prominence. Quarion confirmed that he could feel the mysterious energy of a portal within the coffin, so the PCs cautiously opened it. There was indeed a familiar looking portal and the PCs jumped through.
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Re: Episode 27: The End of (Most) All Things

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AFter jumping through the portal in the vampire's crypt, the PCs found themselves in a frigid landscape facing a tall, ice covered cliff. In short order, a group of abominable yetis attacked the interlopers, and while that battle was raging, a remorhaz showed up and munched a few yeti and tried to swallow Brigga. The fights were difficult but the PCs prevailed, then rested in the now empty yeti cave. When they were somewhat healed, the PCs climbed the rest of the cave to an opening on top of the cliff and found an open portal there.

That portal took them to the magical/alchemical lab level that they had seen previously when scrying on Erk. As the PCs examined the area they found the book, Esoteric Pneuma. This was the book which was a copy of Kossoth the Greedy's working journal when he created the Book of Infinite Souls. The PCs quickly thumbed through the tome, seeing that Kossoth was obsessed with three things in particular when creating the Book.

1) Kossoth was fascinated by the potential energy released when matter was destroyed with a sphere of annihilation.
2) Kossoth was fascinated by the magical knowledge contained in Boccob's realm, the Library of Lore, which is a supposedly endless labyrinthine library that contains all magical knowledge in the universe, in every language and every variation, along with at least one copy of every magical item ever created.
3) Kossoth was also fascinated by Mephistopheles' realm of Cania. Cania is a bitterly cold realm of glaciers and howling ice storms where Mephistopheles and his devotees conduct endless arcane experiments.

After gleaning a few choice facts from Esoteric Pneuma, the PCs ascended to the top level of the Warlock's Tower, to face their enemies at last.
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