Topic: A Red & Pleasant Land campaign play reports

WE START A NEW CAMPAIGN... two players, "Chet" and "Harley".

"Chet" plays an anointed skeleton, intelligent and innately loyal to Vecna. Vecna however is nowhere to be found and his undead army is in civil war.

"Harley" plays an Alice named "Alice" from "a red and pleasant land".

The setting: the unled army of Vecna has recently been freed from The Land of the Dead by the draining of the Dead Sea. They are now invading the continent south of the Sea, which appears to be the Once Palace, a strange ornate endless city spread across a lattice of rivers like a checkerboard.

Chet, a member of the undead army, is assigned to find a lost artifact in the checkerboard territory of the Once Palace. He meets and joins forces with Harley; they decide to abandon the mission and go "hunt vampries".

They quickly find a vampire in a nearby square. Alice willingly submits and is quickly turned into a Red Pawn. The vampire commands Alice to kill the skeleton!

A short combat ensues and Chet dives out a window into a nearby river; he escapes. A vampire search ensues; the skeleton escapes to an Orb Loc, a hidden village of humans. --a friendly deer led him there.

Meanwhile, Alice sells at market some now-useless supplies, like rations, and hunts and drains a random human victim.

Chet is recruited by some human villagers to go on an adventure; apparently a valuable artifact is nearby. A curious talking kitten joins the party en route. They arrive at the site but are confronted by Alice, who has tracked Chet. Alice proposes that Chet help her kill the humans and use their skin to fashion a disguise for the skeleton. Chet agrees; Alice rolls a double 20 and cuts off one of the villager's heads.

The 2 other villagers run away and the PCs disguise Chet with some skin strips. In the basement of this building, another cat is found, and there's some cat drama. Ignoring the cat fight, the PCs find a shiny rock, which turns out to be an animated skull.

The animated skull is Vecna's skull! It commands Chet to kill Alice! Another combat ensues... Alice runs away with the skull.

Alice, threatening the skull with destruction, cuts a deal; if she gives the skull to Chet, the skull will call Chet off. The deal is made and the party's reunited. However, the skull has plans... Vecna's body will be reunited!

notes on play: lotfp once again excelled in producing short, decisive combats. players managed to survive and run away in legit ways. it seems like there's a series of power hierachies, both PCs at this point are answerable to different authorities; Vecna's skull and Alice's vampire master.

Running AR&PL geography was best done by eliding over almost all details of travel; I did explain that vampires cant cross open water, they use weird shortcuts through the strange architecture instead, or tunnels. Chet was blown along by the current for a while, washed up on some strange rocks, was taken by a deer to an orb loc.

Re: A Red & Pleasant Land campaign play reports

*a virtual version of mine sits down to listen to more play reports from Peter*

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Re: A Red & Pleasant Land campaign play reports

That deer should show up in future runs. I think it’s suspicious, and probably has peculiar ulterior motives.

That which does not kill us makes us linger.

Re: A Red & Pleasant Land campaign play reports

A city of starving people seems to be recurrent in my games. ok so the party is trying to cross a desert.

On the journey:
-A skeleton carrying the head of his master Vecna
-a vampire with her unholywater-soaked parasol.
-John's wizard.

The desert: the Now-Drained Sea of the Dead.

They make if four days in the desert, lost half the time. A strange creature appears over a hill. A moving blob of blood. It means to chase them.

The bag of blood (ironically) slays the vampire. Then it chases and kills John's wizard. John's wizard should have prepared Magic Missle instead of Shield, we all chide.

The party's skeleton played dead and survived. The vampire turned into a chess piece for a while but got better. They, two, continue the journey.

A dwarf joins the party. The vampire wants to drink the dwarf's blood; she's getting really hungry. The dwarf declines.

A few days of travel pass. They make a detour around a encampment of undead soldiers. The vampire is starting to get really hungry. She is going to go insane with bloodlust. To spare violence the dwarf offers her blood. The vampire unable to stop sucks all the blood out of the dwarf who turns into a vampire.

There's two vampire PCs now. Trouble is, they have at least 6 days more of travel left, and they're outta blood. The skeleton who doesn't need to eat or drink or sleep is o.k. Actually none of them need to sleep so they walk day and night, the two vamps crowded under a parasol.

Time passes, no blood is found, so the vampires go insane. They're stored in a sack, transformed into writhing swarms of scorpions. The skeleton carries the sack, alone in the drained undead sea.

Eventually the skeleton makes it to the foetal shores of the Land of the Dead. John's wizard, Dead, is there to greet him. There they start looking for Vecna's ribs....... they search among crags of aborted bones.

*     *      *

Searching the foetal beach, John's wizard finds one of Vecna's Ribs. He hides it from the skeleton. Then the wizard finds another rib, so he flees to the nearby City of the Dead.

In the City of the Dead:

most of the starving people still have their dignity,
but some don't.
People speak in fervid tones of a general movement,
but they are without hope.
Most of the proper priests identify it as purgatory.

No one has food, I have a d100 city encounters table. There's competing funerals (for the Dead who hope to die again, properly), hand grenades on sale, spies. The competing funerals turn into a general brawl. C'ren, our wizard of the Veins Campaign (dedicated readers will recognize her from Tales of Insanity vol 3554: … y-reports/), shows up to the brawl. She chops some people up with her chainsaw; she bites a chunk off an arm. That's food right there.

Anyway so the skeleton spends a week searching the beach for Vecna's bones and finds some. C'ren and John's Wizard and the dwarf decide to go into the nearby Necropolis, Vecna's dungeon of despair.


We had a rule where since it's the City of the Dead anyone could bring back any dead character. Thus C'ren is, canonically, back. Dying means you lose 1 CON permanently and end up in the City of the Dead. It's like in "Wristcutters".

The blood demon was rolled randomly (using ranaman's lotfp summon spell generator-ed) so it's a genuine irony.

I'm having the time of my life. Lots of "power levers", like when the vampire drained the dwarf she got a level of Dwarf, but she ran out of blood and went insane. Power levers = mechanics that can change your fortune. LOTFP is a good battleground for these and it was like vampirism vs. desert.

Most of this was done with skill checks/ time tracking / random encounter tables. Like finding a way thru the desert? Everyone make a bushcraft check, anyone succeed? No, you only get a half day's of progress. Then I roll to see if I get a 1, if I do it's a random encounter. I get a 3, so no encounter, so next day, mark off a ration, everyone roll bushcraft... it's a 12 day journey.

(even ruling that they all get to roll bushcraft is generous, shoulda made them elect someone...)

That being said for the skeleton's players it was a bit of a strain, rolling d6s over and over again, waiting to progress. Then again they were probably bored because they weren't starving.

Re: A Red & Pleasant Land campaign play reports

peterwebb wrote:

A city of starving people seems to be recurrent in my games.

Well, you used to play Veins before. Starving is one of two states of being there, where the other is being dead, thereby you can hardly be blamed for it wink

And yes, a vampire killed by a blood-blob is pure irony big_smile XD XD.

Last edited by Gregorius21778 (2018-12-05 13:26:40)

With kind regards
My blog

Re: A Red & Pleasant Land campaign play reports

probably the coolest thing was that C'ren of the Veins was ahead of the game. she had already been in a starving city, and she already knew the best thing to do is just go ahead and chop people up. that's what we call "player experience" as well as "character experience"

Re: A Red & Pleasant Land campaign play reports


A horribly racist statue is unveiled in the center of the city of the dead. Well C'ren has issues with this so she revs up her chainsaw and takes on 12 purple hooded people who put up the statue. She kills a few and then dies to their daggers.

She dies, she gets to ask God three questions, then she comes back to life... In the middle of the city of the dead, next to the statue. Hey, those purple hooded people she killed are back too! The combat continues...


Meanwhile Allan Spallan the Skeleton is searching for Vecna's Ribs along the coast. Howyaver Black Knights have appeared at regular intervals along the beach; placed there by a local undead warlord name of Izzank. Allan has to go and get an appointment in the Necropolis if he wants permission to beachcomb...

Some conversation is had between Allan and Vecna's head... apparently all skeletons are driven to commit evil and it is only by Vecna's grace that they remain civilized at all... Vecna lost all his body parts in a card game with "the police"... sounds fake but ok...

C'ren and gang give up the combat over the racist statue. God has told C'ren that the most amount of gold locally is in Vecna's Necropolis, so they decide to explore the city's sewers where a secret passage into the Necropolis can be found.

In the sewers: a live rat or two, a chest of drawers full of valuable clothes, a horrible clanking animate pile of iron gates, a slippery and ghost-filled path down to the Hollow City, and finally, the child gang who rules the sewers. The kids, staying beyond the party's light, agree to guide the party to the Necropolis's secret entrance for some coin.


Up above, Allan the Skeleton is permitted into the Necropolis by its undead guards. The Necropolis is a sprawling city made of green glass, the headquarters of Vecna's undead forces. Allan waits a few days to get an appointment with a clerk to talk about beach-combing rights but is ultimately turned down; Allan cant reveal his mission, since Vecna's head wants to keep a low profile... Allan leaves, to go meet up with the rest of the party...


The sewer children lead C'ren and co over to a crack in a sewer wall which leads to the necropolis. Through the crack in the wall the party can hear a guard patrolling. They call the guard over and have a pretty awkward exchange; eventually the guard's superiors are summoned. There's some noncombat with C'ren holding up her chainsaw in the crack and a bunch of skeletons yelling. Eventually the party leaves.

They meet up with Allan Spallan and come back to the sewer/necropolis crack and negotiate with Vecna's head. Vecna wants to keep a low profile but he's willing to command a few guards if that's what the party needs. All of the guard skeletons of the Necropolis love Vecna so they gleefully go get a bag of gold for the party-- 10,000gp. (we're on the gp standard, not the sp standard -ed) Vecna also retrieves his shins leg bones and feet which were stored in the Necropolis, so he's now a little walking skull with legs. Problem solved, no need to go in the dungeon at-all.

Everyone goes up a level from the gold-getting.

PLAY NOTES: you can tell there was a pretty big swerve at the end. Sometimes LOTFP feels like the players trying a bunch of wacky stuff until they hit on something. I'm having trouble roleplaying Vecna seriously, he's pretty jovial for a Lich.

Troika's influence DEFINITELY still being felt in this game, lots of uhh easy changes in fortune, cosmic strangeness. Also VEINS OF THE EARTH is influencing the game, helping me put together the sewer tunnels, the starvation, I'm using my d100 list of veins interstices to get into/out of the sewers, plus C'ren's experience seems immediately applicable.

Chet is playing Allan Spallan the Skeleton. Chet is having an interesting time because he's carrying around a talking head which he must obey absolutely. Chet loves to roleplay with strange rules so this I think tickles him pretty good.

Re: A Red & Pleasant Land campaign play reports

Ok, so pc's wanna summon a demon in the land of the dead:

to get sacrifices they set up a tent that says "free food", and the scam works bc everyone in the land of the dead wasn't doing much anyway.

C'ren rolls well and she snags a Throbbing-Striped Snake Demon that can cast Time Stop. Fantastic. She sets it loose on the city and soon the entire populace is under her control.

C'ren now has a army of Dead People. She comes to terms with Vecna; they agree to take over much of the world together. They gather the rest of Vecna's body parts pretty quickly (using demons and necromancy) and Vecna reassumes command. The Dead/Undead Army is now at full strength!

We elide a lot but essentially the player characters are now military leaders, close confidants of Vecna. For their first mission C'ren elects to return to the Veins of the Earth. Vecna declines to come but will teleport the party to the only known entry to the Veins: the Deep Carbon Observatory.

Supplies are drawn up, a skeletal force recruited to carry most of the load, and four/five Teleports later the party ends up back in Carrowmore. The villagers there are all creepy and talking about Grandma, but we move on...

Back up at the dam some salamander people have a little village that the party quickly massacres. Then the descent begins... They head into the Observatory and quickly find the enormous near-infinite chain which descends thru the abyss to the Veins. It's a week's climb down the chain, for which they have packed... They begin to climb.

An enormous white hand emerges from the dark and grabs the chain. C'ren sends her demon but the hand shakes the timesnake off; it falls into the abyss. The giant climbs onto the chain.

Things are not going well. The skeletons hold the giant off briefly while the party rappels down the chain. Erika the Magic-User is not quick and gets grabbed and is pulped.

C'ren is left alone scrambling down the endless chain. Skeletal forces falling screaming past her. Soon the chain vibrates and she can feel the giant on its approach. She casts Magic Missile as a last resort but it does little and the giant eats her alive.

general notes: time stop demon launched everyone into domain play... then they planned a new expedition, set out on it, and were tpk'd...  all in one session preddy good... ... all the characters respawn in the Land of the Dead.  we're gonna take a break for a while and play a Top Secret campaign

Re: A Red & Pleasant Land campaign play reports

peterwebb wrote:

C'ren rolls well and she snags a Throbbing-Striped Snake Demon that can cast Time Stop. Fantastic. She sets it loose on the city and soon the entire populace is under her control.

How did that happened? Was C´ren able to achieve a "greater margin" on the Domination roll?

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Re: A Red & Pleasant Land campaign play reports

Gregorius21778 wrote:
peterwebb wrote:

C'ren rolls well and she snags a Throbbing-Striped Snake Demon that can cast Time Stop. Fantastic. She sets it loose on the city and soon the entire populace is under her control.

How did that happened? Was C´ren able to achieve a "greater margin" on the Domination roll?

greater margin, not massive margin. this due to the high volume of sacrifice and thaumurgic circles