Page 152 - Downhill From Here

24th Jul 2012, 6:00 AM in Dragonshy
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Downhill From Here
Average Rating: 5 (3 votes)
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 24th Jul 2012, 6:00 AM edit delete
Among both DMs and players alike, forgetting a few small rules isn't necessarily a bad thing, especially if what you're doing at the moment is intuitive and doesn't break the game's balance.

The opposite sometimes becomes an issue: People tend to remember very specific rulings at the worst possible time. Like, for instance, when you're in the middle of planning (or executing!) a crucial strategy.

Notice: Guest comic submissions are open! Guidelines here. Deadline: January 27th, 2023.



Cain 24th Jul 2012, 6:00 AM edit delete reply
Stay on target
We're too close
Stay on target
AAAHHHH!! *comic death noises*
Always love the distraction, and sometimes, you just can't plan around stupidity.
Zuche 24th Jul 2012, 6:44 AM edit delete reply
Okay, Cain, I'll give you Tyree and Hutch again, but this is the last time!
Cain 24th Jul 2012, 7:00 AM edit delete reply
There are about 20 Guns, some on the surface some on the tower.
The guns, they've stopped.
Looks like the strippers worked.
Zuche 25th Jul 2012, 4:09 AM edit delete reply
... Well done.
Cain 25th Jul 2012, 7:48 AM edit delete reply
Have to take back the crown of the insane somehow.
Boden King 24th Jul 2012, 6:03 AM edit delete reply
I've got a question for all DMs out there. When you start up a new campaign, how do you handle PCs? Do you assign premade characters or do you let the players make their own? If they do make their own characters do you put any limitations on it like only certain races or classes?
Cain 24th Jul 2012, 6:07 AM edit delete reply
I let them them choose, though they often go with a balanced party, there is the odd one shot who comes in and borrows dice and character and fails.
City Strider 24th Jul 2012, 6:08 AM edit delete reply
City Strider
Usually let them make their own, but give them basic information/knowledge of your campaign world first so they make appropriate characters. That way you shouldn't have to veto anything.
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 7:26 AM edit delete reply
Yeah, for our campaign Zarhon let us essentially choose our own characters. We all settled for relatively low level characters with a variety of classes.

And then a level 85 Paladin from WoW showed up. And was chased off by a mob of thieving children.

As for ignoring rules, well, my wizard would be pretty useless by now if we kept to the strict "set number of spell charges" rules found in D&D.
Digo 24th Jul 2012, 7:30 AM edit delete reply
I let them make their own characters, but I go over all their abilities and their background to ensure they're legit (rules wise) and that the character is "team friendly".
Innisa 24th Jul 2012, 7:35 AM edit delete reply
Ah, usually, I let them create their own... provided it makes sense in the world. If it doesn't make any logical sense, or if they can't argue logic for its existence, then its a no. I don't like making characters up for others, since it is what they will be playing. If you can't relate to your own character, then it usually is harder to play properly (in my experience). And usually, I make them start at a low level. Sometimes having over powered characters isn't so much fun (depending on the campaign).
Masterweaver 24th Jul 2012, 7:43 AM edit delete reply
Make the characters, and I'll build a campaign around them.
Karilyn 24th Jul 2012, 9:04 AM edit delete reply
As long as the character isn't actively destructive, it's usually cool to shape the universe around them, even if it means that the capital city of your campaign instead of being populated with the holy trinity of human/dwarf/elf is populated by humans, elves, and anthropomorphic felines (or depending on how strange your furry friend is; anthropomorphic dolphins, and you move the capital city next to the coast).

It's usually harmless compared to a lot of other things players could chose to do... like wanting to play an alien dinosaur who's strained on a medieval fantasy planet and is using holograms to make myself appear as a gnome in order to fit in until he can repair his ship and escape this primitive planet.

... Actually that sounds pretty awesome.
Demonu 24th Jul 2012, 9:27 AM edit delete reply
I'll let them make their own characters, unless it's someone who's willing to learn or still learning the game, then I've got some premade characters they can pick from and just go from there.

It's regular D&D I DM so pretty much anything fantasy-ish goes. Unless it blatantly clashes with the game lore like wanting to play a mecha controlling space pilot in a medieval fantasy world. I usually still find ways to work around it though.
XandZero2 24th Jul 2012, 9:52 AM edit delete reply
"... using holograms to make *myself* appear as a gnome..."

I think you gave yourself away right there, Karilyn. What campaign setting are you playing in anyway?
deeman45 24th Jul 2012, 9:50 AM edit delete reply
I let them make their own characters, though I impose certain restrictions based on setting.

My restrictions are pretty minor, though; I whole-heartedly approve of playing a vampire in a cyberpunk campaign.
XandZero2 24th Jul 2012, 10:05 AM edit delete reply
By the way, as far as Boden King's question - I'd recommend letting the players create their own characters, as it makes the players more invested in the game.

However, I would also recommend working through the character creation process with each player one-on-one. That way, you can help them with character concepts (and also stop them before they go overboard). If you have a particular campaign setting in mind, you can also be their to further remind players of any limitations you've set.

I've gotten a whole group together on the first day and just made characters - and, in my opinion, it can actually be pretty fun to toss ideas around.
Ramsus 24th Jul 2012, 10:33 AM edit delete reply
Like city strider I give them info and let them pick their own. I will ban certain races and such if they're just setting inappropriate or are basically one trick ponies (hah!) flavor wise (see 4th ed Revenants).

Though I often do push the idea that if someone is a race or class nobody else can choose those options, just to try to get some variety and not end up with things like three humans and one kobold.
Anvildude 24th Jul 2012, 12:06 PM edit delete reply
Funny. Most of the campaigns I'm in end up with only one _human_.
Stairc 24th Jul 2012, 10:49 AM edit delete reply
I let them choose and find a way to make whatever they want to run work. No Shardminds or Thri-Kreen in my campaign setting, yet players want to play them? No problem! The Shardmind becomes a crystal statue given life by its psionic crafter (it's a real boy!) and the Thri-Kreen becomes a mutation triggered by an Archmage's spell-duel.
Necro Critic 24th Jul 2012, 3:52 PM edit delete reply
I let them create their own characters, but they have set limits to work out, in order to keep balance. I'm currently running a Final Fantasy game with the rules of 1 person per race and a specific balance between fighters, mages, and odd-job classes.
Rodavure 24th Jul 2012, 5:45 PM edit delete reply
Half the fun of playing D&D is getting to create a character. I never use premades because it takes the creative element out of the game, that's also why I prefer 3.5 to 4e. If someone minmaxes and makes an overpowered character I just give them less loot until they are balanced with the rest of the party.
Ponyfodder 24th Jul 2012, 9:33 PM edit delete reply
I always let them make their own. However, munchkining can become rampant in a couple of my groups, and I either have to make monsters REALLY nasty or plug horrid loopholes.
LoganAura 24th Jul 2012, 11:43 PM edit delete reply
For my pathfinder game, I mostly allowed the players to make their own (Except for City but she's the exception, not the rule) and had a hand in making sure the party was balanced.
Curb 25th Jul 2012, 10:05 AM edit delete reply
With a new campaign, I usually let them make their own characters, but do set limits Character classes based on where the campaign is set and how the party is being built. Take the villian campaign I'm working on for some friends. They are doing a pure fantasy campaign, so that limits them to fantasy classes and races. No one's running around with a missile launchers. :)
MWS 25th Jul 2012, 6:56 PM edit delete reply
I normally let my players create their own characters, with GM and other players' input. Sometimes it's mostly wide open ("Make characters that would find themselves on a spaceship, whether as crew, passengers, or stowaways."), other times it's much narrower ("Make a character that's 15 years old, who will be taking part in a rural medieval village's Midsummer Coming of Age ceremony").
Boden King 25th Jul 2012, 8:12 PM edit delete reply
Thanks for all the advice, it's wicked helpful. I'm planning on DMing a campaign a few months from now, so expect more questions from me. I'll try to keep them to one a week.
Parchment Scroll 25th Jul 2012, 8:39 PM edit delete reply
I make them make their own. I encourage them to connect their characters' backgrounds, but only between one or two other party members, to create a fun dynamic. Having two characters vying for a mutual friend's attention can be hilarious.
Tilmer 14th Aug 2012, 2:47 AM edit delete reply
I let them makes, put I put a 3 class limit on the players, because one time I had 8 players. =ALL- Rogues
Umiyuri Papaeyra 24th Jul 2012, 6:04 AM edit delete reply
Umiyuri Papaeyra
There's lots of anime mouth going on in this episode. Haven't you noticed?
City Strider 24th Jul 2012, 6:09 AM edit delete reply
City Strider
Friendship is Magic has a heavy anime-influenced artstyle in general.
Umiyuri Papaeyra 24th Jul 2012, 6:11 AM edit delete reply
Umiyuri Papaeyra
I'll be more specific then. There's a lot of side mouth syndrome going on for this page. Usually you have one case of side mouth every few episodes...
AJBulldis 24th Jul 2012, 6:53 AM edit delete reply
Ponies are inherently flexible creatures, both physically and intrinsically, given to the impossible at whim.
Zarhon 24th Jul 2012, 7:18 AM edit delete reply
They're also made of dark matter.

And their hooves are filled with granulate.
Forderz 25th Jul 2012, 6:25 PM edit delete reply
Well, at least actually have muzzles so the mouths aren't completely out of place.
ClowCell 24th Jul 2012, 9:08 AM edit delete reply
I think it's important to note that while there is a lot of flounder mouth going on here it's only when the mouth is closed. A fair compromise in order to get the wanted expression in my opinion.
Zarhon 24th Jul 2012, 9:38 AM edit delete reply
Newbiespud 24th Jul 2012, 10:05 AM edit delete reply
Believe me, I HAVE noticed. But in all the frame-skipping I do, the side-mouth look is infrequent enough that I suspect it's only one particular artist who does it, or something like that.
Umiyuri Papaeyra 24th Jul 2012, 10:30 AM edit delete reply
Umiyuri Papaeyra
Yeah, I think it's the one studio that tries to get away with it. People have noticed differences in quality depending on the episode, since multiple episodes are handled by different studios at the same time. For example, check out the mouths in the Find a Pet song.

The animator forgot that the cheeks MIGHT press up against the eyes in this art-style… so we ended up with these really creepy anime mouths that looked pasted on, as if the entire face were really flat.

(Though this art-style tends to make all angles as 'flat' as possible.)
Oblivious 24th Jul 2012, 6:09 AM edit delete reply
Twilight's reaction to Fluttershy's sudden info dump:

As far as the sudden remembering of important rulings, I got one for ya. How about the DM deciding that right before we storm the big bad's hidden lair, he thinks now's a good time to implement a huge change on a character, due to what happened when we split the party?

We were playing a 3.5 campaign, and this was a time where, if the DM felt you were straying too far from your alignment, he'd forcibly change it on you. Doesn't sound like that big a deal for new comers to DnD, right? Well, two problems with that.

One, old school DM's hit you with a level loss for forced alignment changes, because it's such a major change to a character; not sure if the same held true for willing alignment changes, but our DM at the time didn't punish us for that if we could justify it in-character. Two, some classes are dependent on their alignment to keep their class benefits, such as druids and paladins. So if their alignment changed, they became quite useless, unless maybe they multi-classed.

So, what's all that got to do with a split party? Well, this DM did the thing where we were waiting in a separate room, while our solo character (in this case, our paladin), reunited with the party. The paladin didn't die, and the DM didn't say anything to us after we reunited, so we returned to business as usual, which meant planning to kick the big bad's backside.

All of a sudden, the DM described that everything around us stopped around us, like time had frozen, and we were visited by the paladin's god (forget which one it was, but it was a lawful good deity.) Long story short (too late), his god stripped him of his paladin status, since he brutally murdered someone in the alley (which of course happened while we were split), and forced him to go on a quest to redeem himself or be smote on the spot.

So now, we have a new quest, in which our tank is useless and one level weaker than he was before. Joy...
Stairc 24th Jul 2012, 12:21 PM edit delete reply
Ouch. Level loss is terrible and forcing things like that... Not my cup of tea.

Raxon 24th Jul 2012, 12:44 PM edit delete reply
Here's an idea for you. An enemy that steals levels. Not a level drainer, but a level thief. You could have a small side quest where the party goes after someone who stole their power(levels) and plans to use the energy from them for some dark, arcane ritual.
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 1:10 PM edit delete reply
Oh, oh. And the cultists manage to summon a monster using the power, but instead of being say, a level 8 demon, it multi-classes into level 2 of all the classes that the party is. Now you could play it as a joke (paladin powers are unusable, realizes it can't use a two-handed weapon and cast spells at the same time), or an interesting battle (a bard class that knows what it's doing).

The party should get their levels back once it's defeated, though.
Raxon 24th Jul 2012, 1:41 PM edit delete reply
Absolutely. Perhaps they should have to eat its heart(s) to gain its power and get their levels back!
Ranubis 24th Jul 2012, 2:48 PM edit delete reply
Why settle for one monster as a mishmash of the party? Have the ritual create a parallel version of each of the party members!
Oblivious 24th Jul 2012, 4:33 PM edit delete reply
There's a lot more to the story than that; this is just the basic rundown of what happened. It actually turned out to be a great adventure. That's didn't stop us from yelling at the DM for us getting blindsided like that.
Zuche 24th Jul 2012, 6:52 AM edit delete reply
It's not fair to accuse Pinkie of being a LARPer...not that there's anything wrong with that.

She could be a professional clown who just happened to have props handy when the game started. Hopefully, that won't include the cannon.
Ranubis 24th Jul 2012, 7:22 AM edit delete reply
I can't wait until we reach the Party Cannon in the comic. The group's reactions to the Loopy Bard having a weapon like that? Gonna be priceless.
Zarhon 24th Jul 2012, 7:28 AM edit delete reply
I'm holding out for:

- Pinkie sense
- Party of one
- The "Smile Smile Smile vs will" song
- Everypony's face when they realize Pinkie Pie has an incredibly overpowered deadly cannon weapon that could instakill all the bosses and monsters they've faced so far... And that she's been using it to shoot harmless confetti and streamers. And that she had it since level one. Cut to RD smacking her head on the table repeatedly.
Ranubis 24th Jul 2012, 7:36 AM edit delete reply
Oh Celestia. Calling it now, Party of One is going to be an alignment change for Pinkie. Chaotic Good to Chaotic Evil.
Zarhon 24th Jul 2012, 8:09 AM edit delete reply
That sounds hilarious. Pinkie Pie, converting to evil and secretly terrorizing her team-mates, in exchange for demonic powers of confetti making and parties.

DM: ...and with that the pact is complete. You are now infused with dark powers, in exchange for an unknown price and an alignment shift which is hidden from your party. What would you like to do next?
PP: Hmmm. Since I'm evil now... I'd like some minions. I go out into town and start a song?
DM: Uhm... Okay... Why?
PP: To mind control everyone, of course!
DM: What?! How do you expe-
PP: Through smiles.
DM: ...
PP: ...
DM: Roll at a -19 penalty.
PP: Oooh, a nat20. And since it's smiles thats a cutie mark critical, right?
DM: I think I'm going to need to scrap a few villains...


DM: A force-field passes over the train. It harmlessly passes through all of you, unreacting.
*DM hands note to Pinkie*
Note: The force field is meant to alarm of evil entities trying to smuggle themselves into the Royal Wedding, as well as inflict "smite evil" onto them every two rounds they are inside it. Roll to see how it affects you from now on.
Pinkie Pie: nat20 + 26. Is that enough?
DM: As you exit the train, Pinkie Pie suddenly sneezes confetti.
PP: Tee Hee! That tickles!


PP: Hey Applejack.
AJ: Yeah, what?
PP: You know that blood oath you signed three session ago?
AJ: Yeah? What about it?
PP: You didn't read the fine print.
AJ: Whats the important about that?
PP: Well, you've broken the oath. So now, I get to get my due from you.
AJ: Which is?
PP: Oh, not much. Something your character probably wont need.
AJ: I ain't paying you a single bit of my savings.
PP: Oh, its nothing physical like that, I assure you!
AJ: Whatever...


AJ: I keep bucking cherries, ignoring Pinkie Pie as long as I can.
PP: Ok, I'd like to use that skill we've discussed.
DM: Ok, roll on it.
PP: Darn, natural 1.
AJ: Whats she doing?
DM: Are you familiar with the "Call of Cthulhu" spells and supplements?
AJ: No.
DM: Then you don't want to know.


No wonder AJ ran when she broke her blood oath Pinkie Promise.
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 7:38 AM edit delete reply
Personally, I thought the Smile, Smile, Smile was either a bet with one of the other players or part of a ritual that would grant her great powers if she got everypony in town to smile at the same time.

Which is why the DM introduces Cranky.
Digo 24th Jul 2012, 7:39 AM edit delete reply
I've actually outlawed working toy gun props in my games.
A few years back I was running a conspiracy adventure and one player brought a fancy rubber dart gun as a prop since he was a marksman. Whenever combat happened, he'd show how he was holding his gun to help illustrate his positioning. Cute, but whatever. It seemed harmless at the time. I let him have his fun.

This got others to purchase dart/nerf/bb/etc. guns and use them as props. Two sessions went by and things were still okay, although they were losing ammo all over the floor.
Session 3 was the problem child-- party got into a heated argument over a mole on the team and the players ended up actually shooting each other with their prop toys. Happened so fast I didn't realize ammo was flying until it hit me. Literally.

I took a dart to the right eye.

Session ended right then and there. We regroup'd a week later, but everyone who fired a prop took an EXP penalty for that fiasco and toy gun props that can fire ammo were forever banned since.
Raxon 24th Jul 2012, 11:35 AM edit delete reply
There is nothing unreasonable about bringing props to a tabletop gaming session, as long as they're not dangerous or troublesome.

My Harpo cane wouldn't be too bad to bring, if my character is mute, and I roleplay him as such. An air horn would not be so acceptable.

That wouldn't make me a larper(not that there's anything wrong with that), it just means I take my characters a little more seriously. (For a given value of 'serious.' I'm still more likely to play him something like Harpo, and make in amusing.)

Edit: Also, yeah, I wouldn't bring any prop that would be excessively disruptive. That's a bad idea. Anything involving flying parts, including, but not limited to, Nerf guns, marshmallow guns, suction cup dart guns, toy bows and arrows, trebuchets, WATER GUNS, slingshots, or even those cool USB rocket launchers.

Nothing that makes excessive noise, or has a significant chance of causing damage. This includes damage to physical objects and people, but also applies to the mood of the game, which the GM has worked very hard to put together, and the actual arrangement of the gaming table.

Remote control cars, even very tiny ones, can mess up the gaming table easily, even if you only accidentally bump the controls. This goes double for combat when miniatures are involved.

In short, the rubber chicken should be okay to bring. Your super soaker XPS 95000 is not.
Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 1:09 PM edit delete reply
Ok, what about my actual HK USP .40S&W. Its not a toy, and I carry it whenever and wherever possible. Would that be ok to bring?
Raxon 24th Jul 2012, 1:49 PM edit delete reply
As long as it stays in the holster, and proper firearm safety is observed at all times, I wouldn't have a problem with it. [/serious]
Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 4:35 PM edit delete reply
Proper safety, sure. But I can't guarantee it will stay holstered the whole time.
Raxon 25th Jul 2012, 11:20 AM edit delete reply
Ah, well, that's understandable. After all, HK makes some very nice guns, and while I personally don't use them, that doesn't mean I don't admire quality. I certainly wouldn't mind looking at it.
AJBulldis 24th Jul 2012, 6:55 AM edit delete reply
Fluttershy's insistence on being useless finally makes sense. She could have said something earlier though.
Zarhon 24th Jul 2012, 7:21 AM edit delete reply
One of the things I love about this comic: Spuds ability to find and include all the silly frames. Case in point: Twilight's face in the last panel.

Spud, will you ever show off a compilation pic of silly frames from the show you wanted to use for the comic, but couldn't fit into the story/situation?
Enchanter Tim 24th Jul 2012, 8:59 AM edit delete reply
I gotta admit when I saw that last panel the thing that came to mind was this:
Newbiespud 24th Jul 2012, 10:20 AM edit delete reply
Not really, Zarhon, because that situation doesn't happen very often - to the point where I can't recall the last time such a thing happened.

Besides, the Twilight face is on the screen for several seconds, so there's no glory in the grab for that one. The silly shots I'm REALLY proud of - the ones I had to use the moment I found them - were one-frame wonders: Twilight's scrunchy face on Page 120, and Pinkie Pie's super-wide grin on Page 130.
Digo 24th Jul 2012, 7:32 AM edit delete reply
I remember when the party had to bail from a falling castle and they all latched onto the mage as she casts feather fall...

Mage: "Shoot, what's the weight limit to this spell again?"

The horror on the ther players' faces was priceless. Luckily they just made it under the limit.
Ranubis 24th Jul 2012, 7:42 AM edit delete reply
"Remember back when I had those wonderful tendrils made out of evil? And how they could do anything? Maybe you could understand why one would dump all non-Apocalyptic spells given that advantage. Eh heh?"
Ethan 24th Jul 2012, 8:52 AM edit delete reply
Oh, Black Mage. The only antihero (I know of) that makes Belkar look like a paladin by comparison.
Jason Shadow 24th Jul 2012, 9:41 AM edit delete reply
Jason Shadow
Antihero? Oh ho, neither Belkar OR Black Mage are antiheroes. They're a full-blown Heroic Sociopath and Villain Protagonist, respectively.
Digo 24th Jul 2012, 10:18 AM edit delete reply
Though at least for me, given the choice I'd rather spend time with Belkar. :)
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 7:52 AM edit delete reply
'm guessing that the next comic will be the mane six discussing loopholes to get around Animal Empathy not working.

TS: But Fluttershy, doesn't Animal Empathy work on all beasts?
FS: No, it only works on animals that would actually be willing to communicate with me. Not dragons.
RD: But we saw you totally talk down a manticore. That was attacking us.
FS: The manticore was a warm-blooded mammal with a size class not that different from ours. Not a dragon.
PP: You seemed to get along well with Spike. Perhaps you can use that "experience" to better relate with dragons.
FS: Spike is a well-behaved baby dragon who has viewed ponies as equals. Not a wild giant-sized dragon whose only experience with dragons would be as pests sources.
Zarhon 24th Jul 2012, 8:14 AM edit delete reply
That, or she'll end up giving herself an even bigger penalty for tipping off the DM to an error he made.
Digo 24th Jul 2012, 8:58 AM edit delete reply
I was picturing Fluttershy's player as going off on the DM when she scolds the dragon.

FS: "How dare you!"
DM: "Uh... what?"
FS: "I may be useless on this adventure, but no one, I mean NO ONE, will TPK my friends! Do you understand me?!"
DM: "...But the ranger kept picking apart my encouunters."
FS: "And i'm sorry that she did, but you're the DM and you should know better that its more important that everyone has fun than trying to kill everyone off."
The Guest 24th Jul 2012, 9:16 AM edit delete reply
"There, there. You're not a bad DM; you just made a bad encounter."
Digo 24th Jul 2012, 10:20 AM edit delete reply
I suddenly desire making that into a T-shirt when I next gather with my RP friends.
Stairc 24th Jul 2012, 12:37 PM edit delete reply
So full of win. Reminds me that when a gnomish archmage's talking pink party-obsessed pony took over the far realm (the realms of madness in D&D) the players got to overhear her, with no context, saying...

"Don't worry, you're not a bad beholder. You just made a bad decision."
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 1:01 PM edit delete reply
I think I remember you mentioning this one. Was it the one where all the monsters had to wear party hats and one of them looked over at the adventurers with a look that said, "Kill me, please"?

edit: Found it. Comic 114. Stairc's campaign, Zarhon's alt-script, and the introduction of the Joker Mindflayer.
Zarhon 24th Jul 2012, 1:03 PM edit delete reply
Heh, I posted that one!

Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 1:21 PM edit delete reply
I think I like where this is going
Stairc 25th Jul 2012, 2:19 PM edit delete reply
I'm not sure if I mentioned it to you Zarhorn, but your alt-script about that incident has taken the honor of being the only stock-description I've ever used. It was just too good to go to waste. =)
Zarhon 25th Jul 2012, 5:14 PM edit delete reply
Stock description for what exactly? :3
Goblin Scribe 24th Jul 2012, 9:46 AM edit delete reply
Oh snap.
Intimidate does, though.
EspyLacopa 24th Jul 2012, 9:58 AM edit delete reply
And then we stop and look at Fluttershy's character sheet, and realize her Intimidate is tied with Diplomacy as her highest skill (+15).
Masterweaver 24th Jul 2012, 10:18 AM edit delete reply
DM: Roll for intimidate
FS: *Nat20 chain roll*
RD: have made love to the dice.
The Guest 25th Jul 2012, 7:12 AM edit delete reply
I wouldn't recommend it. They get all wet and sticky and don't roll right...

Wait, were you being figurative? 'Cause, uh, I totally was too... Yeah. Not at all literal...
Goblin Scribe 24th Jul 2012, 9:47 AM edit delete reply
I think the GM's learned his/her lesson after talking to AJ.
Stairc 24th Jul 2012, 10:46 AM edit delete reply
Hey everyone, thanks to the amazing work of all of you on the Pony Tales Forums, we're ready to present our first ever expansion. A leveling up process is also in development, worked on by none other than Newbiespud and myself - as well as expanded utility talent options, racial options, monsters, lore and much, much more.


Equine Power - The First Ever Pony Tales Expansion
Jason Shadow 24th Jul 2012, 1:42 PM edit delete reply
Jason Shadow
Dear Princess Celestia,

This is glorious.

Your faithful student,
Jason Shadow.
modulusshift 25th Jul 2012, 7:36 AM edit delete reply
...I am so running a campaign of this sometime this year. But who could I get to play?...
Guest 25th Jul 2012, 10:12 AM edit delete reply
Heck, probably a ton of people on the comic and forums!
Stairc 25th Jul 2012, 10:13 AM edit delete reply
Thanks! It's sure a lot of fun to make. We're thrilled you're all enjoying it so much.

Can't wait to hear the stories of more campaigns.
City Strider 25th Jul 2012, 1:32 PM edit delete reply
City Strider
Planning on running your system of Pony Tales for my RL group. Considering I'd been working on a ponies mod to World of Darkness, I have to say that your work is an amazingly simple, yet effective method of going about it. So thank you, and those who contributed to it, for your hard work.
Stairc 25th Jul 2012, 3:11 PM edit delete reply

Thanks City Strider. That's great to hear. I just love working on games, and to hear others enjoying them is the best possible thing.
masterofgames 27th Jul 2012, 8:11 PM edit delete reply
Can I play? Please? I have a hard time finding groups.
Timber Wolf 24th Jul 2012, 11:02 AM edit delete reply
Twilight's "Well fuck" moment.
Zarhon 24th Jul 2012, 1:31 PM edit delete reply

Horizon: "Our love can never be! My heart belongs to that chick with the breasts!"
Mimic: "Is that what I am to you?! An old piece of furniture you can just throw away?! If I can't have you, NOBODY WILL!"
Tiffany: "Wat."

Skitter: "Fascinating."

Rolf: "FFFFFFFF-."

Part Lizzie: "A closet tried to eat me"


Skitter teleport past the the wall and find yourself in a completely lightless tunnel. Plenty of rats and other nocturnal animals can be heard around you. Looking behind him, a single burnt-out torch stand can be seen on the wall, as well as the wall section he passed through.


Rolf stands at the entrance of the room. The room is probably the most decorated one you've seen, with colorful tapestries, rugs and marble decorations. A small altar is on the far end of this miniature hall, with a metallic bowl and chalice on top of it. The altar is draped with golden silk. More magical lights float around the room. Large marble pillars are in the back of this room, and you see that they extend through holes in the ceiling, further upwards. He sees several long, knotted ropes near the pillars, coming from a bigger hole in the ceiling. He can't see whats up there from where he's standing, however.

H & T

13 + 5 = 18 (H)
7 + 5 = 12 (T)

Horizon strikes at the mimics stub-legs, hacking at them until they separate. The thing trashes crazily and loses hold of itself, abandoning its attempts to raise itself up. Tiffany then charges in deliver a blow onto it's exposed back. The blow hits directly, causing a hammer-shaped hole to appear. You can see the things maw from inside out now. In retaliation, the beast pulls its hurt arms into itself and form a pair of thin arms from its back, each striking wildly in an attempt to punch you.

Flail -> 6, 9

Neither of them hit you, however, as you move out of their limited range.
Kris_The_Guest 24th Jul 2012, 1:45 PM edit delete reply
"I think we're going to win." Tiffany smiled.
Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 1:52 PM edit delete reply
"My heart belongs to that chick with the breasts."

Sounds about right.

"I'd say we already won. It's not getting up any time soon." Horizon chanced one last kick to the maimed mimic, and sheathed his weapons. "Now lets get out of here, before it learns to regenerate." He gestures to the door and makes his way over to open it.

Ok, NOW door open SOP combo ready go.
Calypso 24th Jul 2012, 1:57 PM edit delete reply
Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 2:01 PM edit delete reply
Because if he didn't think of it he can't use it. I assume you mean, why would i say that thing about regenerating.

Unless you mean, why would I say we'd already won, in which case the answer is because.

Or you're talking about the breasts comment, to which my answer is because that's hilarious.
Calypso 24th Jul 2012, 2:07 PM edit delete reply
I was talking about Tiffany but then you ninja'd me. That is just evoking bad luck.
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 2:00 PM edit delete reply
Rolf stared around the ornate room. Looking at the altar, he considered that this room was where some sort of MAJOR ritual happened. These pillars and ropes probably connect to something in the attic, possibly bells.

One of which, he recalled, had a bell tongue that needed replacement. Rolf had a terrible thought of pulling one of the ropes and having a bell come falling down on him. Or worse, pulling the ropes in the "wrong order" and turning on some sort of security system.

Regardless, Brother Silas was not here. He went back into the hallway and closed the stained glass door, making a note to ask the cleric about it (along with the bolted room and Sister Ivy's room).

Rolf decided the next door to try was the big metallic one. If Brother Silas was in isolation, this seemed an obvious choice. He went up to the metal door and tried opening it, saying "Brother Silas, are you in here? We have an emergency."

He hoped he didn't have to open ALL these doors before he found Silas.

Oh dear. Best case scenario is that you'll run into it again in the catacombs. Worst case is that you've gained the ire of a family of mimics who have sworn revenge (Cue Horizon stabbing a mattress before he decides to sleep in it).
Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 2:03 PM edit delete reply
I feel like Brother Silas is in the attic with the cultists, and you are wasting a venerable shit load of time trying all these doors. Just saying.
Kris_The_Guest 24th Jul 2012, 2:07 PM edit delete reply
OMG, I can imagine Horizon stabbing a mattress.
Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 2:15 PM edit delete reply
Joke's on you, Horizon only sleeps on the assembled blood, tears, and ashes of his enemies.

Oh no wait, never mind. Yeah, he sleeps on mattresses.
Zarhon 24th Jul 2012, 2:40 PM edit delete reply
H & T

You quickly open the door. The next room is completely lightless. It is very dark in here. You are likely to be eaten by a grue mimic. Meanwhile, the mimic starts crawling away from you towards the opposite corner of the room.


No response from the door. Checking the door itself reveals it as locked. You notice a red liquid under the door.
Kris_The_Guest 24th Jul 2012, 2:48 PM edit delete reply
"Uhhh, let's turn around." Tiffany suggested. "We can probably kill the evil I thought I'd never say that line."
Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 2:58 PM edit delete reply
...Zork? Is that the name of that game? I once stayed up til 8am playing that game. Fun as shit.

Horizon peered into the darkness, briefly, and then decided Tiffany was right. "Good idea. If all else fails, we can build some kind of ladder back up to the hole we came through." Horizon returns to the struggling mimic, and begins hacking at it for pieces to use. "Since you have the big hammer, go ahead and give it a few whacks, make it stop squirming." He smacks away one of the hands as it takes a swipe at him.
Kris_The_Guest 24th Jul 2012, 3:03 PM edit delete reply
Tiffany started smacking the Mimic as well.
Ramsus 24th Jul 2012, 3:04 PM edit delete reply
(Gah. I didn't see this down here because I was expecting it to be right where Zarhon mentioned killing stuff.

Alt script: "Torches, I don't need no stinking torches! I have darkvision.")

Skitter, completely forgetting he'd left Rolf behind, started to explore the hidden passageway.
Zarhon 24th Jul 2012, 3:18 PM edit delete reply
The closet, more or less helpless, takes several more holes in its back before it stops moving for good. Its arms go limp and its features sag slightly.
Kris_The_Guest 24th Jul 2012, 3:22 PM edit delete reply
Tiffany sighed lowly.

BRB gotta play dominoes.
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 3:07 PM edit delete reply
Rolf swore and headed back toward the hallway with the two cultist and the cleric. "If Brother Silas is behind the big metal door, then he might be bleeding," he said to the cleric. "I'll try to get my friend so he can unlock the door. In the meantime, please head over there." He then rushed into the room with the journal. Skitter was nowhere in sight. Hopefully he hadn't wandered off to far. "Skitter!" Rolf shouted, pounding at the walls randomly. "Come back out here, we've got trouble!"

I am assuming that the cultists are in a weak enough state that we don't have to worry about them at this point. Otherwise, we might have to lock them in a room or something.

edit: Darn, just missed Skitter. If he doesn't hear me, I'll ask the cleric if he knows where the keys are (with my luck, it'll be in the attic or something).
Ramsus 24th Jul 2012, 3:15 PM edit delete reply
Hearing shouting, Skitter raced back.

"Hey, I found the not so secret afterall passageway. Why shouting Rolf?"
Kris_The_Guest 24th Jul 2012, 3:20 PM edit delete reply
My brother has a good quote.

"Oh no! If I get bit by the mimic, I'll become a mimic! Or a Norwegian."
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 3:24 PM edit delete reply
"Got an injured Brother behind a locked door. I need your help to unlock it,one side or the other, so the cleric can heal him up. We know where the secret passage is, so we can explore it later. Come this way, please." Rolf starts heading back toward the big metal door. "We might need Silas if I don't want "my soul rent asunder" getting in these catacombs."
Zarhon 24th Jul 2012, 3:30 PM edit delete reply
R & S

Metal room? Thats not the isolation rites room, thats where we keep most of the churches valuables and the magical equipment of our paladins. The isolation rites rooms are the ones with silk, so they can meditate without noise interrupting them, or others talking to them: The silk padding serves as noise isolation. The keys to the rooms are held by the high priest, but he's not here yet. There might be some spares in his office. It's the room with the wooden door.
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 3:50 PM edit delete reply
Rolf sighed. "I probably should have asked beforehand. It would have stopped me from panicking. It might have just been spilt wine or something." He turned to Skitter. "Sorry for the false alarm. I'm going to check the last few rooms. You can either go back to the secret passage and find some way to open it from the other side, or you can help me check the two doors with silk on them." He thanked the cleric, and headed back into the hall, ready to open the door with the yellow silk padding first. Before he does, though, he goes back in front of the metal door to determine exactly what the red fluid is.

Roll Perception on the red fluid. If it's not blood, have him go ahead and open the yellow silked door.
Ramsus 24th Jul 2012, 3:53 PM edit delete reply
"Hmmm, probably better not to split up. I'll check this one." says Skitter ignoring his own previous actions and picking one of the doors with silk to enter.
Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 4:04 PM edit delete reply
Horizon pushes the mimic underneath the hole, and begins stacking bits and pieces of assorted junk on top, making a makeshift tower to climb up. "Ok." He said, standing back from the admittedly shaky pile. "You go first."
Kris_The_Guest 24th Jul 2012, 4:10 PM edit delete reply
Tiffany approached the pile and calmly put her hand on the pile.
Zarhon 24th Jul 2012, 4:52 PM edit delete reply

Skitter enters one of the rooms. The room is padded on the inside with silk, and is mostly empty, apart from a bed, table with books and another door leading to a small room with some kind of fountain thing. A woman, wearing a yellow robe was in here, sweeping the floor, when you appeared. She screams the moment she sees you and starts whacking you with the broom.


You check the liquid. It doesn't smell like anything, and its rather thick. It's probably blood. You then suddenly hear the sound of a woman screaming, coming from from the room Skitter just entered. Before you can even ask, the Cleric responds:
"That would be sister Ivy. She's using the rite room temporarily until we can fix her usual rooms door, and to let her recover from a rather nasty shock she had recently. Your... uhm... friend... is not doing her any favors on that matter."

H & T

Climb -> Nat 20

Tiffany effortlessly climbs the pile and reaches the hole. She jumps slightly and grabs onto the edge of the stairs, followed by pulling herself up.
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 5:10 PM edit delete reply
Rolf rushed over and stood in between Sister Ivy and Skitter, taking a blow or two from the broom. "Ma'am, we're sorry for intruding. My friend here means you no harm." He turns to Skitter. "Turns out my false alarm wasn't false after all. I need you to either shadowport inside or get a key from the high priest's office. Then you can unlock the door and get whoever's in there out so that the cleric can heal them."

He turned back to Sister Ivy. "Sister Ivy, please calm down. Listen, my name is Rolf, this is Skitter. We're sorry to have frightened you, but we believe that some necromancers have infiltrated the temple and we were investigating. I believe I saw the door to your...other room. Have there been any beasts or other strange things that may have caused that damage?"

It's always another complication, isn't it? Silas can wait until all the bleeding bodies have been taken care of.

Also, let's watch as Horizon fails to climb up the stack and it falls on top of him.

edit: You know, one of these days we're going to move away from a place that doesn't have a convenient cleric right around the corner.
Kris_The_Guest 24th Jul 2012, 5:13 PM edit delete reply
Tiffany stood at the top and looked down. "It's good to climb."

Wow, why do I only get twenties now!
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 5:14 PM edit delete reply
Because Horizon and I roll the 1's out for you. You're welcome.
Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 5:20 PM edit delete reply
I know, right. I was fully expecting Tiffany to topple. But no, SHE get's the 20.

Time to mix it up a bit.

Horizon looks up to where Tiffany is waiting. Reaching out, he grabs a small plank out of the pile, destabilizing it. As it falls he moves back, grabbing some old cloth, and wraps it around the plank. He looks back up to the hole, and calls out. "I just had an idea; a really good idea. Go back and find the others- do NOT go after those cultists alone. I'll see you when I see you." Turning away he walks back to the door. He retrieves some flint and steel from one of his pouches, and lights the makeshift torch. Horizon opens the door and moves into the previously black passage."
Kris_The_Guest 24th Jul 2012, 5:30 PM edit delete reply
O-okay." Tiffany walked away from the hole, heading for the exit.

Me: If Lizzie is there, I'm going to enter the game and hurt you.
Tiffany: She can do it.
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 6:16 PM edit delete reply
Wandering into the dark catacombs, alone, while potentially sabotaging your only known means of escape. This has all the earmarks of a first-rate plan.

Oh, well. I'm sure you know what you're doing.
Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 6:19 PM edit delete reply
Well, you know.

"Horizon Does Something Stupid- Part 4: This Time It's Gonna Work."
Ramsus 24th Jul 2012, 6:22 PM edit delete reply
(No we aren't. We're taking one of these clerics with us when we go. =P )

Skitter gives Rolf a somewhat dirty look and leaves and checks out the room with the locked door.
Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 6:28 PM edit delete reply
Its too bad we can't get another player to pull healbot duty.
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 6:29 PM edit delete reply
Order now and you can get the complete box set of "Horizon Does Something Stupid", including "Part 1: Let's Stick a Knife in a Bomb", "Part 2: Drinking Wine with Dead Rats Around It", and "Part 3: I'll Show This Lion Who's Boss". Sign up for previews of future installments, such as "Part 7: Threatening the Lion's Cubs", "Part 12: Let's Sneak up Behind Beady Jack and Surprise Him", and "Part 35: I'll Show This Dragon Who's Boss". Call now!

Well, Tiffany's a healer. Kinda. You know, in a pinch. I mean, if you were going to die anyway without it.
Kris_The_Guest 24th Jul 2012, 6:42 PM edit delete reply
Me : *hug Lyn.*
Tiffany : Uhhhhh....
Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 6:49 PM edit delete reply
Well, technically Part 2 was drinking the wine that I assumed (understandably) was poisoned, just to one up Tiffany. If you remember, I wasn't trying to do something dumb with the robe- I just missed a few details.
And you forgot the instant classic, HDSS Part 21: Let's build a Bomb.

Tiffany hasn't actually healed anyone yet. I don't think she's even told us she can heal.
Lyntermas 24th Jul 2012, 6:56 PM edit delete reply
No, she stabilized the prop wizard and tried to heal the dead merchant. She probably would have told us about it when we all met together for the first time.

She might not have mentioned the other...interesting quirk about it, though.

Updated the infomercial for accuracy.
Ramsus 24th Jul 2012, 7:00 PM edit delete reply
Well, it's not like Horizon has the trademark on doing stupid stuff. Rolf grabbed and threatened an assassin and Skitter devised and carried out a plan that was to build a bomb and use himself as bait to lure a horde of undead inside of it.

And Tiffany decided to stick with this party.
Bronymous 24th Jul 2012, 7:34 PM edit delete reply
Eh. Moment of passion (no homo), a decidedly effective plan with low risk, and easily the safest decision she's ever made.
Ramsus 24th Jul 2012, 8:46 PM edit delete reply
I actually expected something to go horribly wrong with that plan you know?
Zarhon 25th Jul 2012, 7:24 AM edit delete reply
R & S

Sister Ivy calms down a bit and says:
"You mean that broken door? You can blame that drunk swine Silas for that! Me and him are Lizzie's caretakers, we feed her every night. The drunken sod however left the door to her room open, causing one of her cubs to get out while she was asleep. It somehow managed to sneak into my room and went to sleep under my bed, while I was out doing midnight prayers. Didn't even notice it when I went to sleep. A few hours later, Lizzie woke up and found the cub missing. She broke through several doors before hearing it in my room and breaking in! Gave me the shock of my life, that did! Whats this about necromancers though?"


You head on over, back to the main hall. Lizzie is nowhere to be seen. There's a big hole where the door used to be. You hear a woman screaming behind a wall. There's a door with a stained glass window near the direction of the sound.


You light up the torch, allowing you to see properly, and head on through the door. The passage continues straight like a short tunnel, progressively changing as you go further along. As you reach a crossing, the walls and floor are vastly different: The floor is stiff dirt, the walls are a mix of limestone, dirt and plaster, held by planks. The passage splits in two directions: Left, leading further on and right, leading to an ancient-looking rock slab of a door. You hear rats occasionally, as well as faint sounds of water drops. Ants and other crawlies dart across the floor on occasion.
Lyntermas 25th Jul 2012, 7:30 AM edit delete reply
Did Skitter manage to get behind the metal door? (I'm assuming checking out the room meant shadowporting to the other side.)
Zarhon 25th Jul 2012, 9:01 AM edit delete reply
Actually... Skitter, how much of a vampire/dhampyre is your character?
Lyntermas 25th Jul 2012, 9:07 AM edit delete reply
Oh, that's rarely a good question.
LoganAura 25th Jul 2012, 9:07 AM edit delete reply
^Bad sign.
Kris_The_Guest 25th Jul 2012, 10:40 AM edit delete reply
Tiffany ran over to the stained glass door and tried to open it.
Ramsus 25th Jul 2012, 10:43 AM edit delete reply
Great, now I have to go luck up those rules....

Well, apparently that's a good question. Let's say his father was a vampire and his mother was a dhampyr.

Dhampyr aren't specifically effected by holy symbols or other such but, they "are considered a vampire for the
purpose of effects that relate to vampires." So I suppose if a room is warded against vampires specifically as opposed to just "undead" it'd work?

So to sum up: Vampire but, not Undead.

Another thing I forgot was that apparently I gain a +2 bonus to sense and recognize dhampyr and undead of all kinds. Neat.

This did answer an important question though. Apparently vampires can have children. (Probably a really low fertility rate though.)
Kris_The_Guest 25th Jul 2012, 10:52 AM edit delete reply
Oh boy.
This opens the door for TiffanyXSkitter shipping.
Lyntermas 25th Jul 2012, 11:07 AM edit delete reply
No, Kris, don't be tempted by the Dark Side of shipping!
Lyntermas 25th Jul 2012, 11:11 AM edit delete reply
"There's been an attack on the city by a lich named Zilean. He's created bombs capable of creating large explosions and zombifying the dead. He's already attacked the bar, and tried to attack the audience of the play outside. We've found two necromancers already in the temple who claim to have planted a device in the catacombs. We thought Brother Silas could help us navigate the secret passages."

Rolf went over and opened the other silk door.

Two questions remain at this point (for Rolf anyway): if Silas is in his room, who's behind the metal door? And who was in the bolted room?
Kris_The_Guest 25th Jul 2012, 11:14 AM edit delete reply
Too late! *zooms off.*
Tiffany : Well, she's always shipped me with someone as I've been a muse for her for two years.
Ramsus 25th Jul 2012, 11:21 AM edit delete reply
I can only imagine. Actually, no, I can't actually. Or maybe just won't? One of those certainly.
Lyntermas 25th Jul 2012, 11:33 AM edit delete reply
I believe your imagination block, Ramsus, is one of your brain's self-defense mechanisms against excessive trauma.

Now we just need to know what Horizon will do next, and Skitter will be able to properly meet his doom find out what's behind that door.
Zarhon 25th Jul 2012, 12:04 PM edit delete reply
1) The cultists didn't say that.
2) To clarify a bit: The room you just found Ivy in is the golden silk room, and was unlocked. The room Rolf is checking is the yellow silk room.


The door is locked, predictably. Wouldn't want an alcoholic from getting his hands on wine.


You enter the room, feeling a slight unpleasant tingling as you do so. The room is illuminated by a single glowing magic orb. There are lots of holy-looking symbols on almost all the walls, and the inside of the door. The room itself is more like a glorified armory, with plenty of shelves, weapon and armor racks. There's a lot of stuff in here: Giant suits of armor, various weaponry, fancy staves, a few rugs and tapestries, some alchemical ingredients you don't recognize, a covered life-size statue, and other doohickeys. On the floor is a man, wearing a yellow tabard, plate armor, and a big helmet. There are gashes all over his arms, a stab wound in his shoulder, and another stab wound near his chest. Listening to his chest, you can hear him breathing, although he isn't conscious. Judging from the amount of blood, he'll bleed out soon, if he doesn't get help. The problem is, the door is still locked, and there isn't any key in it...


You enter a hallway, with lots of side rooms. One of the doors is broken, another is bolted.

Also, here's another fun question for you, Rolf: What exactly did you do with the cultists in the previous hall, after you called the cleric over?
Ramsus 25th Jul 2012, 12:09 PM edit delete reply
"Figures. A room fool of loot and no way to carry it all and a dying guy. Well, let's see if we can get this door open." thought Skiiter. He looked around to find anything he could use to try to pick the lock(s) on the door. (And presumably then tries to do so.)
Kris_The_Guest 25th Jul 2012, 12:09 PM edit delete reply
Tiffany rushed over to the broken door and looked in.

Hey Zarhon! Who do you ship?
Lyntermas 25th Jul 2012, 12:20 PM edit delete reply
Heh, about that. I did ask the cleric for ropes and gags after searching the room they came out of, but then he directed me toward the hall of infinite doors. Hmmm.

Rolf swore. Of course the alcoholic would be locked up. All this work to try and get into the blasted secret passages that the cultists already got into.

Tried. Tried to get into. But they couldn't find the entrance to the secret tunnel, could they? But if the device wasn't in the room they came out of...

Rolf facepalmed. Then it was still on their persons. And they had forgotten to search them.

They had also forgotten to tie them up.

Rolf pardoned himself from Sister Ivy and rushed into the previous hall, getting a magic missile ready. "Stay where you are. Drop whatever's in your hands. We won't hold back this time."

Hadn't realized we had called the cleric over. Well, at least he's not getting stabbed.
Zarhon 25th Jul 2012, 1:09 PM edit delete reply
You may want to re-read what the cultist said.


The room is empty. It has a closet and a table, and there appears to have been a chest in one corner, as something of that size left a mark on the floor. You suddenly hear a door open nearby.



You rush into the room, spell at the ready. You suddenly hear a dull sound as the door you opened stops in place, followed by a sound similar to a pile of books being dropped. It appears the cultist you hitched a ride on earlier just regained consciousness... And you just hit him in the head with the door as he was getting up. He's knocked out cold. Again. The other cultist, however, is nowhere to be seen: A slight trail of blood (and what appears to be evidence of someone slipping on the grease from earlier) seems to be leading to the outside door.
Kris_The_Guest 25th Jul 2012, 1:13 PM edit delete reply
Tiffany spun around, hoping that it was a cleric.

If it's Lizzie, then I'm going to try something Horizon would never do.
Lyntermas 25th Jul 2012, 1:27 PM edit delete reply
Maybe I'm missing something.

"He doesn't try to call your bluff. He painfully says that their master sent them to place a device in a secret tunnel. He says that the entrance is inside the room they just came from, but he's not sure how to open it from this side. "

Now, the way I see it, there are two possible ways for this statement to be true.
1. Success. They managed to find another way inside the tunnels, plant the device (or left it) and came out in the room we found them in.
2. Failure. They went into the room we found them in, failed to find the entrance, and were scared off by the roar before they could plant anything.

Now unless my main fault is wrongly believing "catacombs" and "tunnels" are interchangeable, I'm at a loss. However, if push comes to shove, I'll try an INT roll for a hint.

Rolf looked down at the unconcious cultist. "Just isn't your day, is it?" he said. "Then again, it might not be mine, either."

He rushed toward the outside door. He yelled, "Cleric, prop wizard, we got a runner! Listen well, necromancer. You've got nowhere to run to. I saw your master's face when he gave the trigger and failed to see a result. You think he'll let you live after failing him? Surrender now, or face the consequences."

(Roll for Intimidate, few to no ranks)
Bronymous 25th Jul 2012, 1:36 PM edit delete reply
Will you all quit faffing about? Don't worry, here I come to save the day.

Horizon looks left, peering down the continuing tunnel. Then he looks right, to the door. Then he looks left again. Then right. Left. Right. He feints left but doubles back right. Satisfied that neither the tunnel nor the door were trying to pull a fast one, he approached the door. Horizon examined it for any indication of where it led, and then attempted to open it.

Obviously not a simple, open or break down situation, so lets do just trying to push it open or aside. Rolling identifying where it leads- nat20 (fucking really?), and opening- nat20 (wat).

I seriously just rolled that, no lie. Fucking worthless dice roller.
Zarhon 25th Jul 2012, 2:41 PM edit delete reply
(The cleric/wizard are nowhere near that entrance, its on the side of the temple, while they're at the front of the main gate.)


Intimidate -> 16

You yell your warning as you exit. You're not sure if he heard you though, as you cant see him anyhere. You do, however, see that the trail of blood is leading towards the gardens/graveyard.


You hear Rolf shouting something, to someone, as well as running and a door opening.


Perception -> 12
The best thing you can find to pick the lock seems to be a strangely bent claw, from one of the ingredient jars. Its a bit clunky, but better than nothing.

Lockpick -> 5 (Got any ranks?)

You break the claw before you manage to open the lock. Luckily, it doesn't jam.


Using your newly developed paranoia, you deduce the following:
- The door is made of stone.
- It is not a mimic, or anything else with an appetite.
- It was at least 24 years, 23days and 35hours since it was last used.
- The outlying frame of the door suggests entry into a slightly less-tunnel like area.
- There don't appear to be any trap mechanisms within the lock, or the handle.
- There is a fungus in a corner of the door, notable for appearing only in areas of low humidity, a trait not expected from the area you are in currently.
- There is a sign on the door that says "Eme~ia, Sa~ly, Gil, Pen~~, Wor~~tan 11~~ - 1~~4" (it's partially rubbed off).
- The door, you now notice, has barely visible motifs of crosses, doves and angels.

You then carefully cover the handle with your hand. Holding tightly, you turn it clockwise slightly, until you feel a vibration from within the lock. You then push the door towards yourself, causing the portal to slide along its hinges and open.

The room you see is rather small, almost like a broom closet. Its walls don't have any planks, and instead are all made of rough stones. The walls are lined with holes and shelves, all containing skulls, various bones. Most of them are intact, a few are missing some minor bones, or are messily arranged in a pile, or have simply dropped to the ground out of their shelves. Other than the grisly sight though, there isn't anything else in this room: Just bones on shelves.
Bronymous 25th Jul 2012, 3:13 PM edit delete reply
1) You said it was a rock slab.
2) Enema, Salty, Gil, Penis, and Wartortle, huh?
3) When did Fluttershy move her Shed underground?

Horizon is not fazed by the gruesome contents of his room. He remembered the catacombs were nearby, and this seemed to be another burial chamber. Or a serial killer's ultimate hiding place. Either way, he was safe.

Horror story etiquette told him to leave the bones as they lay, so he went to the nearest pile and started sifting through it, looking for anything cool- maybe a few trinkets buried with their owners? He also pics out the biggest, fattest femur he could find- a snack treat for that lion, if he ever saw it again. Maybe she would choke on it. He also grabbed a slightly smaller Ulna, as well as a sternum and Scapula, which could be fashioned into some really neat novelty weapons. Horizon paused, trying to remember precisely where he had learned those bone names, but decided it wasn't important and kept searching the rest of the room.

An alternative to this would have been, of course, "HDSS Part 5: I'm using the chief's skull as an athletic cup."
Ramsus 25th Jul 2012, 3:26 PM edit delete reply
(He probably would have high ranks in picking locks and such.)

"Blast. Ok, plan B." Skitter teleported past the door and went to tell the first cleric he saw about the door's locked state.
Zarhon 25th Jul 2012, 4:21 PM edit delete reply
Whoops, forgot about the door. editing.
Kris_The_Guest 25th Jul 2012, 4:16 PM edit delete reply
Tiffany groaned before roughly following where she heard the shouting coming from.
Lyntermas 25th Jul 2012, 4:55 PM edit delete reply
Rolf thought about swearing, but sighed instead. Well, let the idiot run. At least hopefully he would take the delicate yellow potion with him.

Coming back inside, he decided to search the unconscious cultist. Maybe if he had the instruction's sheet on him, it would show how to get into the secret tunnels anyway.

Today wasn't great. I was supposed to meet with a pest control company this afternoon to deal with a rat that's CURRENTLY in the bathroom. So what do I do? Take a nap right before he's supposed to show up. I'm not feeling so good about that.
Ramsus 25th Jul 2012, 5:03 PM edit delete reply
Wait, so....what happened to the cleric we had watching the goons? And the other one?
Lyntermas 25th Jul 2012, 5:09 PM edit delete reply
The first cleric we met is still in front of the gates to the temple (we asked him to lock the door). The cleric who was watching the goons came into the hall you are in now after I found blood underneath the metal door.
Bronymous 25th Jul 2012, 6:19 PM edit delete reply
Wait, back up. Why is Skitter in your bathroom?
Lyntermas 25th Jul 2012, 6:23 PM edit delete reply
Oh, silly Bronymous. Skitter's not a rat, he's a lizard.
Bronymous 25th Jul 2012, 6:51 PM edit delete reply
What? Since when? Ramsus, why didn't you ever say anything?
Lyntermas 25th Jul 2012, 7:13 PM edit delete reply
Will Skitter and the cleric manage to find the right key in the high priest's office and save the paladin in time? Will Rolf finally free Brother Silas and get him to open the secret tunnel? Will the cultist's escape mean that they'll be ready for us, or simply that we can follow the blood trail? Will Tiffany be able to read the log books and find out that the orb's spell is slowly turning Rolf is slowly turning into a grue? Will Horizon suffer any negative consequences for disturbing the dead? And will Bronymous ever figure out what kobolds really are?

Find out on the next exciting episode of Campaign: Zilean's Revenge.

Zarhon, if you have the material ready, you could try what you did in comic 146 and post an early update on this page while we wait for more comments on the next comic. Just a thought.
Ramsus 25th Jul 2012, 8:28 PM edit delete reply
Will Skitter even care if they save the paladin or not so long as he isn't blamed?
Kris_The_Guest 26th Jul 2012, 4:25 AM edit delete reply
Bronymous, just go read Order of the Stick. It will be easy for you to remember that Kolbods are lizards.
Zarhon 26th Jul 2012, 7:59 AM edit delete reply
> Horizon: Trophy Binge

Desecrate ancient tomb -> 17

You blatantly disregard all morals and decency to acquire new equipment. You take note of skull, that seems the perfect size for a fashionable codpiece. You also note a few bones that would look great with your armor, to give you that "skeletal warrior" kind of look. You regret for a moment, that you were not the one to end the lives of the individuals contained within, as that would make the looting so much more justified and fair, as far as your viewpoint on life is concerned. You don't notice many valuables: The bones must have been buried without possessions. The best thing you can find is a half-broken ring and some decayed clothing. The bones themselves don't show any sign of bite marks or other damage: Looks like they died of old age. Some of the, piled-up bones appear to have been boiled, probably as a room-saving method of burial, or to prevent the usual decay of a corpse by stripping it of flesh.

You then notice that one of the bones (A rib, apparently) appears to be floating in midair. Huh.

> Skitter: Converse

The cleric asks Skitter of the paladins condition. After he explains, he says:
"Thats not good. We need to stabilize him and then wake him up. That should be enough for him to heal himself. Otherwise, he'll die in minutes. Quickly, go to the high priest's office and find the spare key: It should be a big steel one."

> Rolf : Loot

Searching the cultist, you find that he has another one of those little gems, as well as a small wand of some sort. You don't find an amulet on his neck, but you do find a blank note, which you inspect with the amulet you have. It appears to be an identical set of instructions for operating the bomb. While you do so, Tiffany suddenly appears from the other side of the hall.

> Tiffany: Reunite with loving companion.

Lyntermas 26th Jul 2012, 8:53 AM edit delete reply
Rolf sighs in relief. "Tiffany, good to see you. Things have been going haywire on this end. We ran into a paladin who got mad at us, and then we heard a huge roar, and then two cultists came out. One of away, but I'm not worrying about him right now. Since I can't seem to find ANY of the bomb components on this one, we still have to check the secret tunnel they mentioned. Skitter found an entrance, but in order for us to open it, we have to enlist the help of a drunk named Brother Silas. There's still one more bleeding body in the next hall, come this way. Oh, and could you take a look at these? I remembered you had some clerical training, so you might be able to decipher them."

He hands the three notices and the log books to Tiffany, and starts inspecting the wand. As he does so, he asks, "By the way, what happened to you guys? Where's Knife-Guy? And you wouldn't have happened to run into a large roaring beast named Lizzie, by chance?"

(Roll Arcana on the wand)
Ramsus 26th Jul 2012, 10:05 AM edit delete reply
(Uh....did he happen to tell Skitter how to get there? If so he does. If not....he asks. And gives the guy a look like he's a dumbass for not telling him the first time while he does so.)
Lyntermas 26th Jul 2012, 10:40 AM edit delete reply
He said it when we were together, it was behind the ornate wooden door. Which Skitter will now open.
Kris_The_Guest 26th Jul 2012, 12:37 PM edit delete reply
"Errrm....." Tiffany looked nervous.
Bronymous 26th Jul 2012, 1:38 PM edit delete reply
Oh, man, you just don't understand.

When it comes to armor, there are a few things that I do not like, and do not do. Stereotypical Evil armor is chief among them- no bones, no spikes, no black with glowing red. Same goes for Stereotypical Good armor models and palettes. Nor do I even consider codpieces. Or a full suit of heavy plate of any design, while we're on the subject.

I generally avoid capes and cloaks, as well, but obviously that is not the case here.

Also, indiscriminate killing for the purpose of looting and desecration is not Horizon's standard procedure; People die for other reasons, and loot is a side benefit. So "justified and fair" is not something he would be considering during desecration like this. It's simple- the bones are there, among possible treasure (though now we know otherwise), and nobody's using them. Might as well.

So to summarize, Horizon only looks for and takes what I described in the first place, and takes notice of the other immediate circumstances.

Now then. About that rib.

Horizon glances at the floating bone. Odd, but not entirely unexpected. He secures his chosen skeletal remains, and calmly, slowly stands. He turns and makes his way back to the door, intent on closing it and getting the hell out of there before whatever that was composes itself.

Eit: And oh yeah. I am aware of the biological status of Kobolds. Keep that in mind as I continue to disregard it.
redwings1340 24th Jul 2012, 7:46 PM edit delete reply
In the one campaign I've played we were facing the big bad (a necromancer who was at a significantly higher level than anyone in our party), and as a wizard, I figured that if I could disable him, we could win this battle really easily. I decided to use deep slumber, and somehow I managed to break his will save. Unfortunately, I didn't realize that he was flying, and that fall damage would wake him up again, making this fairly useless. Then the DM realized that he had stoneskin, and that his protection actually protected him from the falling damage, and subsequently he didn't wake up. The rest of the party was able to easily mop up the zombies, and we had him helpless and asleep within about half a minute after the fight started. In our game I found that remembering individual little rules helped us more than it hurt us, although that could be because our DM was nice enough to give our inexperienced party the benefit of obscure rules.
John Walter Biles 25th Jul 2012, 3:55 AM edit delete reply
I am reminded of the game I ran where the PCs had a very clever, elaborate plan which ran aground because one player forgot he was running a RANGER in this campaign, not the WIZARD/CLERIC he was running in another campaign.

This meant no throwing spells and the plan went to hell.
Ranubis 25th Jul 2012, 10:27 PM edit delete reply
Last time, on Pony Tales:

Suddenly Elephant.

Karilyn 25th Jul 2012, 11:29 PM edit delete reply
My hoof is the hoof that pierces the heavens!
Oblivious 26th Jul 2012, 12:23 AM edit delete reply
Won't it be nice when our viewers can get some context to this? :P
Guest 26th Jul 2012, 11:20 AM edit delete reply
Yes! We must have more summaries! Someone, anyone, make them!
Setokayba 21st Sep 2015, 9:56 AM edit delete reply
I know it's almost three years ago but... WTH is a Lamper?