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hairylarry
Gamer+ News September 28, 2020

Tonight on Inspired Unreality the Gamer+ Book Club discusses "The Epic Of Gilgamesh". This will be our last book club meeting this year, we are taking off for the holidays. There is a link to a free download of Gilgamesh here.

https://gamerplus.org/groups/28

Last week we finished the "Milyagon Treasure Hunt". I've been blogging our gaming sessions. Now I've combined them together in one story and posted it on SFF Short Stories.

https://gamerplus.org/newsfeed/2571

Follow Me And Die reported a near TPK. The players all said, Man, he means it.

https://gamerplus.org/newsfeed/2548

And now all of this stuff but mostly music is going on over at my new website, Hairy Larry Rocks.

https://hairylarry.rocks

Please let me know what you've been doing.

Thanks,
Hairy Larry
https://gamerplus.org/user/hairylarry
hairylarry@curators.mixremix.cc (follow me on mastodon, friendica, etc.)
hairylarry@deltaboogie.com
hairylarry

Caper and Bones found a bench under an oak tree and sat down to rest while Ari and the witch made the squamish salve.


They ground the squamish mushrooms into a paste with wild cherries and sage to make the salve which is good for treating carbuncles and other skin ailments and can also cure light wounds. About 2/3 of the salve filled a jar the witch had set aside so she went and got a smaller jar which she filled and gave to Ari.


With that task done Ari and the witch walked over to Caper and Bones and the witch said, “The items are for the Ogre up in the foothills Northwest of Milyagon. He has been under pressure from orcs and hobgoblins moving in. The branch makes a magic quarterstaff to fend them off and the mushrooms are the important ingredient in a salve for his carbunkles. And the feather? That's for his hat. The Ogre has a magic hat and the owl's feather, willingly given, is a component of the spell. He is smart for an ogre because of the hat so it is very important that the feather in his cap does not become bedraggled.”


Enlightened but still very tired the party made their way back to the inn where they ate a hearty supper and turned in early for the night glad to be sleeping on beds under a roof instead of on the ground under the stars.

hairylarry

In which we recover all the loot, branches from the ancestor tree, squamish mushrooms, and a tailfeather from an owl, and complete our quest.


Last week we left off talking to the fairies near the fairy circle. Cautious not to ask a favor and indebt ourselves to them we finally found out that the fairies remembered when the woodcutter came through here and found the ancestor tree. When the fairies pointed out the trail that the woodcutter took, Caper couldn't see it but Ari and Bones could and Caper soon discovered that it was a game trail and he could also help follow it with his tracking skills.


After hiking for about 4 hours we found ourselves at the foot of a large hill. The trail seemed to continue up the hill but it was not distinct. We decided to climb to the top before dark even though we were already tired.


It was dusk when we got to the top so we waited for dark to see if the big tree at the top of this hill was the ancestor tree. Ari detected magic on the tree and it was magical. She detected magic on branches on the ground and they were not. So this might not be the ancestor tree but at least we were in the right vicinity.


The moon was already up in the sky when the sun set. Soon it was dark and the moon lit the treetops but we didn't see a fey glow. Bones helped Caper up to the first branch and Caper carefully climbed to the top where he could look out over the moonlit forest. After Caper got back to the ground he said, "I think we've come too far. The moonlit glow is brightest to the northwest and I think the ancestor tree is back a ways in the direction we came."


In the morning Bones suggested that Caper climb the tree again for a daytime view but it was slick with dew and Caper couldn't do it. (I rolled a 4) So we headed back down the hill the way we came and at the bottom with the sun peeking up over the eastern horizon we searched for a path up a hill to the northwest. Soon we were climbing the next hill and were at the top well before noon.


Of course there was a big tree at the top of this hill too. Bones boosted Caper up and he was easily able to scramble up to the top. When Caper climbed back down he said, "The next hill to the northwest is even taller than this one. I'm not sure the ancestor tree is there but I'm pretty sure this isn't the ancestor tree." So after we ate we continued on to the northwest again. Ascending the next hill we found a huge tree. It was time for supper. After we ate we thought we would look around for squamish mushrooms just in case this was the ancestor tree. Bones found a patch of them due west and then Ari found a big patch north of them.


After the sun set the big tree glowed brighter than the moon. We went to the big patch of mushrooms and followed the moonbeams penetrating the forest canopy and shining on the ground. With half the night gone Bones finally saw the moonbeams light some mushrooms and he was able to pick five of them which barely covered the bottom of the witch's bag.


In the morning we ate and although we were tired we decided to search for a branch from the ancestor tree before we slept. We searched here and we searched there and then Ari found a big branch just north of the tree. She detected magic on the branch and sure enough it was a branch from the ancestor tree. Caper searched again to the northeast and Bones searched around close to the tree. Bones found one but Ari couldn't tell if it was magic or not. Caper suggested that Ari carry her branch and that Bones should carry his back to the witch to find out if it is magic.


After their naps Ari searched for medicinal plants and Caper searched for mushrooms. Ari found a fever plant and harvested leaves. Caper found two large mushrooms he knew to be edible but when Ari detected magic on them she discovered that they were magical and Caper decided not to eat the magic mushrooms until he had talked to the witch about them.


It took two more nights to find enough mushrooms. The third night we spread out a little with Bones looking at the patch to the west while Ari and Caper looked at the big patch. We had good luck toward morning. With the moon near full it didn't set until almost sunrise. We ended up with 30 mushrooms. 20 filled the witch's bag half full and Ari put the other ten in another bag stowing them carefully in her pack.


Although we were tired we decided to hike on back to Milyagon. We found a game trail heading east and we left the Wilken Woods in the farmlands to the west of Milyagon. Soon we were across the bridge and at the Inn having a hot dinner, something Caper really missed while they were camping.


After we ate it was a short walk to the witch's cottage to the northeast of town and she was vary glad to see us. She kept the branch Ari was carrying saying it would do fine. She looked at the branch Bones found and said it was also from the ancestor tree and was in fact a magic quarterstaff. She told Bones to keep it and thanked him for his help. When Ari showed her the two bags of mushrooms she was delighted and said that she would teach Ari how to make the squamish salve and she could keep the extra for her medicine kit. She grinned wide when she saw the tailfeather, stuck it in her bonnet where it looked right at home, rolled her eyes three times, touched her nose, and said, "Yes, this will do nicely. My thanks to all of you." Then Caper showed the witch his magic mushrooms found beneath the ancestor tree and the witch said, "Now these are nice. These mushrooms are not dangerous but they should be consumed in moderation. One half of one of these large mushrooms will affect three people as if they had two large tankards of ale. And, of course, the mushrooms are much easier to carry then a keg of ale. Unlike ale the mushrooms don't slow you down in fact they do the opposite and make you slightly more dextrous for about four hours."


XP

Group XP

For finding the ancestor tree and completing the quest - 400


Ari

For finding mushroom patch - 20

For finding mushrooms - 40

For finding a branch - 100

For finding the fever plant - 20

Following fairy trail - 40

Detecting magic - 40

Total for session - 660


Bones

For finding mushroom patch - 20

For finding mushrooms - 80

For finding a branch - 100

Following fairy trail - 40

Total for session - 640


Caper

For finding mushrooms - 60

For finding edible magic mushrooms - 40

Tracking - 20

Climbing trees - 40

Total for session - 560

hairylarry
Week one - August 31, 2020

Ari, Caper, and Tude (Ari's wildcat) got a message from Kendrick to go see the witch at Milyagon. The witch gave them their quest, to bring back an owl's tail feather, some squamish mushrooms, and a branch from the ancestor tree in the Wilkin Woods. She also mentioned that no one knew more about Wilken Woods than the woodcutter.

The party went and talked to the woodcutter who drew them a map and gave them sage advice about the fairies.

They entered Wilkin Woods and traveled nearly all the way across it on Woods Way. About halfway across they ventured south and found the first marked owl's eyrie. Returning to Woods Way by traveling due north they found a landmark, a tree with a burl on it that looked a little bit like a face with knotholes for eyes.

Continuing along Woods Way they realize they must have passed the second marked eyrie. Caper leads the party back, leaving the road to the west of the eyrie which they also find. It is now evening so they eat supper and prepare to camp hoping for more luck with these owls in the night.

XP
---
group XP for surviving a day in Wilken Woods - 200
for getting the quest from the witch - 50
for getting the map and advice from the woodcutter - 50

Ari - finding the first eyrie - 50

Caper - finding the second eyrie - 50
- climbed two trees successfully - 20 + 20
hairylarry

Our story so far:

https://gamerplus.org/blogs/259


Ari, Tude, and Caper were joined by Bones under the owl eyrie. The party erected a large tarp using rope and Bones' tent hoping to catch a naturally falling owl's feather. Caper climbed a tree trying to make friends with an owl but when it started to get dark he had to come down. They attracted two owls by putting out some meat in a cook pot on a tripod.


Then Ari threw Tude's ball under some bushes. Tude ran over and flushed a bunch of rodents and bunnies. For a few minutes there was a flurry of owls feeding.  The next time Tude ran under a bush Caper shot a little bunny rabbit. Holding the dead bunny Caper called to the owls with a series of hoots. An owl landed on Capers outstretched arm and started feeding. With his other arm he slowly petted the owl. And then he had a hold on the tail feather that had been bothering this owl. Bones said we should scare the owl. Tude tried to scare it and Caper added in some cat noises and the owl flew off leaving one tail feather behind. Caper handed the feather to Ari for safekeeping.


We went south looking for the fairy circle trying to get some help from the fairies finding the ancestor tree. Ari and Caper kept true south while Bones scouted east and west. Bones was about a quarter mile to the west when he found the fairy circle. He jumped right in it and started dancing but fortunately he made his saving throw and didn't fall into Feyland.


Bones stayed near the fairy circle and after a while Ari and Caper noticed he was late. Ari asked Caper if he had anything with Bones scent on it so Tude could track Bones by scent. Caper held his rope out for Tude to smell and then they followed Tude west to Bones.


Caper found some rocks for chairs and sat down about 20 ft. from the fairy circle and played his flute. Sure enough some pretty fairies came to listen to the music and the party started up a conversation with them.


XP
---
group XP for surviving a half day in Wilken Woods - 100

group XP for getting an owl's tail feather - 200

group XP for talking to fairies - 50


Bones - idea about tarp - 20

Boosted Caper into tree - 20

Finding the fairy circle - 40


Ari - working with Tude at Owl's Eyrie - 30

working with Tude finding Bones - 30


Caper - Climbed a tree - 20

Held owl on arm - 30
played flute for the fairies - 20





hairylarry

Prerelease text from the If You Play You Win game now on Inspired Unreality Monday nights. When this is published I will add the link here.


---


  Ari is a human wizard trained in healing and defense. Ari has a pet wildcat named Tude, she has raised from a kit. The cat is not a familiar but there is a very close bond and the cat is always alert for danger. Caper is a halfling bard with a storied past. Although designed for two player characters this quest could be played by any low level party.

    Kendrick uses a telecommunication spell to send Ari a message. (calls her on her cell phone) He says "Big things are astir so small things must be put in place. Contact the witch at Milyagon. She has a task that needs done."
    Ari and Caper travel to Milyagon and talk to the witch. She needs three things from Wilken Woods but she cannot go herself because her daily rounds helping the elderly keep her busy. She's been putting this off but evidently Kendrick thinks it's important enough to send help.
    The witch says:

    "You have to go to Wilkin Woods to get a feather from an owls tail, some squamish mushrooms, and a branch from the ancestor tree.

   "The feather cannot be stolen but must be given freely. If the owls
suspect foul play they will attack as fowls do. Do not let the feather touch the ground. If you find a feather on the ground it will not work.

"The squamish mushrooms grow  in leaf molds under large oak trees. Their magic concentrates under the moonlight and they are best picked with the moon shining directly on them. Here is  a small bag. It needs to be more than half full but not all the way full or the mushrooms will bruise.
    "The ancestor tree grows large in the heart of Wilken Woods. It's a giant oak. The legend is the ancestor tree was the first tree in Wilken Woods and the forest started from this one tree. The ancestor tree is big magic, the other oak trees less so. The magic dilutes with extended lineage those grown from ancestor tree acorns have half the magic of the ancestor tree. Those grown from their acorns, half again. You will know the ancestor tree because it shimmers with a fey glow in the moonlight.
    "Do not to cut, break, or chop any tree in Wilken Woods. The oak trees will defend the forest. It is safe to pick dead branches from the ground for firewood but fires should not be started under a tree. Never burn a branch from the ancestor tree.
    "Branches on the ground have no magic except for the branches fallen from the ancestor tree. So you can detect magic on branches around the ancestor tree to make sure that a  branch fell from the ancestor tree. A branch doesn't fall far from the tree so first find the ancestor tree and then find a branch. Get a big one.
   "The squamish mushrooms close  to the ancestor tree have the most magic. So after you get the branch search the area for the best mushrooms.
    "Wilken Way deliberately avoids the most magical areas of Wilken Woods. The ancestor tree is to the south of Wilken Way. Nobody knows Wilken Woods like the woodcutter. He lives at the north edge of the woods in the least magical area. Still, all of the woods are magical and you should be on your guard at all times."
    The witch points to the sky and says, "See the half moon up in the blue sky. You have come at a good time. The moon is full in a week and you will have strong moonlight over the next two weeks.

hairylarry
Gamer+ News September 6, 2020

Last week on Inspired Unreality Vivian and I went to Milyagon. We are doing a task for the witch, getting some supplies from Wilken Woods, a magic forest.

Tonight we're going back. And you can come too. If You Play You Win, actual play DnD, in the gamerplus chatrooms at Tenkar's Tavern on Discord. 9:00 PM Central.

Follow Me And Die says "Today on the blog, I write about Session Summaries."

https://gamerplus.org/newsfeed/2415

Made sense to me so I wrote up our session summary.

https://gamerplus.org/newsfeed/2416

Follow Me And Die also introduces us to Devin Rue. He says "Deven Rue is an awesome cartographer, who also makes various other things for table props."

https://gamerplus.org/newsfeed/2428

See you in Milyagon,

Hairy Larry
https://gamerplus.org/user/hairylarry
hairylarry@curators.mixremix.cc
hairylarry@deltaboogie.com




hairylarry

The "Guidebook to the Duchy of Valnwall Special Edition", published by Small Niche Games is available on Drive Thru RPG here.


Guidebook to the Duchy of Valnwall


It is licensed OGL and is built on top of Wizards Of The Coast and Labyrinth Lord as well as other properties listed in the OGL Copyright License at the end of the book.


Peter C. Spahn (pspahn) writes "Small Niche Games would like to encourage professional and amateur publishers to use the Guidebook as a shared regional setting and set their commercial adventures within the Duchy of Valnwall. Labyrinth Lords (and publishers) should feel free to change, add, or remove any of the information in this book to better suit his or her own game."


Their are several great maps in this book including this one.




Just a little bit right of center is a small rectangle that makes a perfect map for our Milyagon Quest, "The Witch's Panacea". Fortunately the map is huge with many pixels so I was able to throw it into GIMP, do a crop and make a few small edits and I came up with this.




Nice map, huh? Much better than I would have drawn myself. So I guess now I know where Milyagon is. It's in the Duchy of Valnwall.


Thanks to Peter Spahn and Small Niche Games.

hairylarry

Some stuff I wrote about Milyagon during the Gamer+ Voice and Text Chat at Tenkar's Tavern on Discord.

---

Vivian and I are writing modules and we are using OGL monster stats, etc. We put them in a separate zine


So now we're writing a little background story to get our next module started.
It's about the Milyagon witch.


So the background story sets up the problem and then when the player characters get involved it becomes a sandbox.


We've been cowriting on Gamer+ and on another social network I wrote called Collab. It's a ground up design specifically for a cowriting game.


I think the background story will help with player motivation.


We didn't really have that with Caves Of Doom. The characters come to town and hear about the Caves Of Doom which coincidentally happens to be the modules title so they know that's where they need to go.


So our modules are one offs. It could be you could run several consecutively to make a campaign. If we write more than two (which I plan on doing).


There's a woodcutter story where the town's woodcutter also sculpts figures that come alive at night.


And there's telescope hill with a tower and a telescope run by a pensioner called the keeper.


The blacksmith, Yon Rogar, is also turning into an interesting character. He also makes weapons and trades in them.


Last week I did the Delta Jazz Workshop. I'm still recuperating but you can tell I'm itching to work on these modules.


There's a bunch of Rogars. One at the docks. One at the stables. Big family of non farmers.





hairylarry
Milyagon is a locale for OSR or Wizards and Heroes.

Milyagon is a small village upriver from the southern seaport Canyanban. It used to be a military fortress and it still maintains substantial wooden walls with a large gate and several smaller entrances. Outside the gate on what used to be the parade grounds is a trading fair where area farmers and craftsmen peddle their wares.


Guard towers set at each corner of the fortress. There is also a lookout tower on the High Bluffs and an even larger tower on Telescope Hill, remnants of military history.


On fair day people come from miles around. Trade is brisk and business is good. Gold greases the wheels and the wheels keep turning.


Citizens:


- Mayor Bannych is former military and a good man in a pinch.

- Sherrif Slykver is slick in fact and not too crooked.

- Tyad Miggles the innkeep is amiable and well off.

- Yon Rogar the smith is big and he looks dumb, but he's not.

- Thom Kellych the shopkeeper is wiry with a sharp eye for profit.

- Marantha is the apothecarist. She has a strong nose and a nimble mind.

- Jon Rogar runs the docks. He's as big as his brother, Yon.

- The priest, Durward, leans toward greed and gluttony.

- The witch lives north of town. Many say her potions work fine.

- The keeper lives on a pension below the tower on Telescope Hill.


Legends:


The woodcutter in Wilken Woods cuts statues and totems as well as firewood. His statues are very lifelike especially in the moonlight. Sometimes a young whippersnapper will tell tale about how one of them came to life at full moon and he killed it. The older folks pay no heed because the legend is no one has ever bested one of the woodcutters animated statues.


No one doubts the witches potions. Her herb garden is small but immaculate and she knows exactly what poisons she's growing as well as what tea eases cramps or kills pain. She has been known to help girls after a rape and the legend is that after she took care of the girl she would take care of the rapist too.


This quest by Larry and Vivian Heyl is licensed Creative Commons Attribution. Images public domain.


https://www.minizines.cc/flat/?x=entry:entry190604-070157


 

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