Monday, September 6, 2010

An Unexpected Message

Today is my 34th birthday. As it's also a day off work, I had the luxury of sleeping in and having a nice lazy morning.

Once I was fully awake, I decided to do some reading. I reached over to the nightstand, grabbed my Nook, and opened the cover. Apparently, my Nook had an amusing birthday message for me:

I love this toy.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

What Would Have Happened

Once again, I have dusted off my dice bag and returned to the gaming table. Right now, I'm merely a player, although I am in the early brainstorming phase of creating a futuristic sci-fi game.

Longtime readers of this blog may recall an article from last year in which I mentioned plans to modify an old adventure from the first edition of Dungeons & Dragons. Well, that plan never came together, as our game group dissolved for quite some time shortly thereafter.

The campaign that I was running at the time has been completely dissolved, with a fair number of plot threads barely laid out, much less resolved. Thus, I've decided to share The Story That Almost Was:

Myrkul Rising

When our story ended, a group of adventurers thrust together by fate had been hired by a scholar to seek out an artifact known as the Crown of Horns. This scholar, one Oliimer Saleron, claimed to represent a learned brotherhood who sought to circumvent death through carefully studying it. The Crown of Horns was important to their studies, as it was rather closely associated with Myrkul (the former god of death).

Almost none of this was true.

Oliimer was, in fact, an assassin. He was a member of the Brotherhood of Death, an organization dedicated to restoring Myrkul to his former power (gods never die, they just become plot devices). They had learned that, as he was "dying," Myrkul had siphoned part of his essence into the Crown of Horns, thus imbuing it with great power. The Brotherhood believed that, if they acquired the Crown, they would be able to use it to restore Myrkul to godhood.

The adventurers were en route to the small village of Hommelet, where they would soon discover the Temple of Elemental Evil. The Crown of Horns would not be in this Temple, although clues to its current location would be found.

Also in the Temple would be a grievously wounded paladin who had also come seeking the Crown. He and his (now deceased) companions were followers of Kelemvor, and were aware of the Brotherhood's intentions. They sought the Crown that they might destroy it and prevent Myrkul from returning to power.

This would have been a major turning point in the campaign - the players would need to decide what their intentions were toward the Crown. Would they join with Kelemvor's priests and seek to rid Faerûn of the Crown? Would they take up the cause of the Brotherhood of Death? Would they take an even darker path, and use the Crown for their own purposes?

These last two options may seem a bit unlikely at first glance, but at least one of these adventurers was of evil alignment, which could have spiced things up a bit.

Had the adventurers decided to take the "good" path, they would have encountered the current bearer of the Crown (well on his way to becoming a lich, due to the curse of the Crown), possibly several times. When they eventually acquired the Crown, they would have had to deal with the Brotherhood's attempts to take the Crown as well as figuring out how to destroy the thing.

Had they decided to assist the Brotherhood instead, they would have had to fight off Kelemvor's followers as they attempted to learn how the Crown could be used to resurrect Myurkul.

If, however, the adventurers had decided to use the Crown for their own ends... Let's just say that their chances of survival would have been less than those of a spaceship being flown into an asteroid field.