[Actual Play] Lost on Carcosa Pt. III: The Perilous Road to Salvation.

(I have started using additional random tables during character generation to flesh out new PC’s somewhat. Behold!

List of Traits roll d20:

1. Pierced Lips, eyebrows, ears and nostrils. (+1 cha)
2. Ritual Scarification (acid, cuts, burning or insect bites). (-1 con)
3. Lips removed or nose removed (-1 cha)
4. Dyed hair.
5. Painted face/teeth or body.
6. Elaborate hairstyle or beard.
7. Filed Teeth (bite for 1-4 dam)
8. Entirely hairless
9. Elaborate birthmark denoting favour/ill favour of the gods (50% chance of either -1 or +1 to all saves)
10. Battle scar (start with 200 xp)
11. Feathered headdress
12. Missing finger (-1 dex)
13. Wears ornate mask at all times if possible
14. Slave brand or scarification from shackles (halve starting gp)
15. Cannibal
16. Receives Visions (+1 wis)
17. Strange tribal superstition (must eat at least 1 pound of dirt each day, eats hearts of enemies, makes fetishes of enemy remains etc.)
18. Equipment is elaborately scrimshawed (150% original value to the right buyer)
19. Golden or diamond teeth (start with additional 3d6 * 10 gp, but has to be removed)
20. Emanciated ghoul-like physique (+1 dex, -1 str).

Mental Traits d20
1. Fanatical devotee of strange god (giant worm, fungus creature, great old one, ancient mutant dinosaur etc.) (+1 WIS)
2. Phlegmatic (calm and analytical) (+1 int, -1 cha)
3. Choleric (dour, grumpy and quick to anger) (+1 Str, -1 cha)
4. Apathetic
5. Doomed (no starting equipment, -1 to all stats)
6. Nihilistic
7. Sanguine (positive and kind)
8. Haunted (your mind has been scarred by what you have seen)
9. Sadistic
10. Idealistic (you believe this world can be saved, most of your peers consider you insane but oddly charming) (-1 wis, +2 cha)
11. Pragmatic (you are a realist)
12. Obsessive (you are focused on one goal to the point of obsession, everything that distracts you is an obstacle that needs to be removed)
13. Mad (your mind has been shattered by the horrors of Carcosa, -1 Wis, -1 Cha)
14. Warm and empathic (for entirely hypothetical female players).
15. Jaded (the horrors of Carcosa have made you inured to things that would drive a normal man mad, +1 to a stat of your choice)
16. Moon-touched (your memories are like water, ever-shifting, you do not know who you are and every time you sleep you wake up a different man)
17. Billious (quick to anger, quick to laugh)
18. Reckless and thrillseeking
19. Delusional (you have inherited the bizarre beliefs of your village, make one up)
20. Sociopath (+1 to int, wis and cha)

So far the trait list has been met with enthusiasm, perhaps as a result of the lack of doomed ritually scarified PC’s so far.)

When we last left off our band of heroes stood before a large settlement of Yellow Men. Deeming them to be peaceful farmers, albeit Peaceful slaver farmers, our band wasted no more then fifteen minutes bickering and coming up with elaborate ways to plunder the wealth that no doubt awaited in the decaying Ziggurat in the centre of the village. Our heroes were briefly interrupted by the stealthy arrival of Kris, a Dolm Man of hithereto unseen Lawful Alignment, who sought to accompany our merry band into the village in search of his Chieftain’s daughter, who had been taken as a slave by the Vile & Mysterious Ulfire Men and apparently sold here. Tempted with the promise of riches in exchange for her safe return, our band quickly acceded to the demands of Noble Kris. It was decided Kakarot, himself a Yellow Man, would pose as defacto leader of a band of sellswords.

The decadent and arrogant Yellow Men, so confident in their well-crafted robes of embroidened cloth, bid them welcome and invited/threatened them into a brief audience with He Who Sits on the PolyChromatic Butterfly Throne, the village’s defacto leader/god-king. After an akward climb atop the Ziggurat, they found him to be a yellow man of great age who sat entirely motionless upon a throne of precious metals and gems, surely worth 10.000 gp at the very least. Sadly, prudence won out over greed and our heroes prostrated themselves before the apparently motionless demagogue before swiftly making their exit, noting one of his handmaidens to be the Dolm Girl Kris was looking for.

Concocting daring plans for later, Mithros went on to get thrown out the village for revealing his Leprosy, though the first Speaker of the Yellow Men did acede to sending a village healer to inspect him outside the village walls. The Village Healer, a buffoon, quickly confirmed it was indeed Leprosy, an incurable illness, and asked 25 gp for this favour. There was much frowning and blathering and veiled threats, and so the healer, concerned for his reputation, mentioned that he had heard rumours of a village in the south that was haunted by a strange metal demon, where it was said they possessed the means to cure the incurable disease of Leprosy. In exchange for a paltry sum of 25 gp, he would be more then willing to reveal the location. Our band also asked him if he was willing to smuggle the Dolm handmaiden out of the village for this princely sum, to which he declined, stating that a sum of 250 would be neccesairy. Our heroes were swift to promise him such a sum, but the physician was skeptical and asked for payment up front, and thus plans were foiled. Our heroes were directed to a village of white men in the west, who were said to be in need to sellswords however. Still broke, our heroes set out, gambling on the excellent bushcraft of T’ch and some leftover Spawn of Nyarlathotep jerky to assuade their terrible hunger.

Bickering over the right course of action, our heroes were reluctant to risk their only sorcerer actually knowledgable in Sorcery, and travelled south in search of healing. Braving the perilous quicksands of the swamp via makeshift snow shoes of stripped bark, they narrowly evaded death at the hands of a hideous Jale Pudding and continued on their merry way.

Pressing onward, undeterred and jaunty, into the grasslands of the south, they encountered a herd of 54 stegosauruses, which your Prince was unable to trick them into attacking for food, and instead chose to pass a nearby fortress. 10 Jale Men, heavily armed, pierced, scarred and naked as the day they were born, marched out to greet them and invite them for dinner. Our band was less trusting of sudden hospitality, and Mithros did seek to dissuade them of their feelings of hospitality by mentioning offhandedly that he was infected with incurable Leprosy. The band cursed and sought to slay our heroes. 3 rounds and many a lucky diceroll later, 4 Jale men sprinted towards the village whilst our heroes stood amid their fallen, untouched and drenched in the heartsblood of fallen Jale Men. Arrows claimed 3 of the Jale men as they ran back, leaving only one to bring news of his humiliating defeat. Kris decided now was as good a time as any to reveal his cannibalistic urges and cut off a prime choice of Jale man to feast upon, to the dismay of his fellow heroes. They decided furthermore that no subtlety or unseemly haste was needed whilst they passed the fortress in leisurely fashion, and were unpleasantly suprised when 50 Jale men, led by an apparent giant, emerged from within, baying for blood.

Our heroes quickly marched to a nearby hill and debated a course of action, with the baying of naked Jale Men in the background. An inspired query was levelled at your Prince. What direction doth the wind blow? A diceroll later and the wind doth blow in the direction of ye naked Jale Men. Whilst noble Mithros, missing several teeth and now with leprosy, did stand upon the high hill and screeched foul curses in the language of the snake men upon the heinous Jale foe, the rest of our heroes set a fire upon the grasslands, causing the superstitious Jale Men to flee and the giant to topple, revealing himself to be nothing but a man atop the shoulders of another man. 5 painted warriors, overcome with either foul lotus incence or simple battle lust, braved the fires and charged after our heroes. The flames and arrows of our heroes claimed but 3, leaving two to charge the hill.

Ah las, the journey, so fortuitous, must end on a grisly note. The berserkers, faces half painted with chalk and eyes wide with killing fury, braved their spears and slew clever Kakarot, dealing grievous injury to the enigmatic Sago the Red in the process. Only the arrows of the Nameless archer and the halbeard of Mithros saved our band from total defeat. Not quite overcome with grief, our heroes continued their travels south, on to many more adventures.

Total Deaths: 6. Letter denotes player controlling the character.
(A) Rohnan (specialist 1) – Eaten by giant spiders.
(B) Jaxxon Windwaker ( Ftr 1) – Impaled by spawn of shub-niggurath
(C) Mongo the Red (Sor 1) – Impaled by Spawn of shub-niggurath
(B) Klak (Spec 1) – Crushed by Snake-man statue
(B) Crystal (Ftr 1) – Drowned in quicksand
(D) Kakarot (Sor 1) – Beheaded by Jale Berserker


2 thoughts on “[Actual Play] Lost on Carcosa Pt. III: The Perilous Road to Salvation.

  1. This really does have a Vancian vibe, the sort of party attrition central to “Big Planet” or the pilgrims section of “Eyes of the Overworld”. How into the proceedings are your players?


    1. If you refer to the degree to which they seem to be enjoying this mode of play, i can answer only in the affirmative. Everyone so far seems down with the high lethality and butthurt has been levelled only in one occasion, when one player struck down another one in fury, almost resulting in a TPK.

      If you refer to the degree of system mastery or DnD Mastery, i would put most of them at novice or intermediate level. Everyone has knowledge of the basic proceedings and many a clever suggestion or hint is often levelled at Your Prince, but none can be said to be experts, particularly at this type of play.


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