Gorpandia

Adventure 7: Prologue

The Academy's Honored Guests

As soon as the girl is handed off to the authorities and the money received and divvied up, Arlo packs his things to leave. “That half breed dragon was fascinating. I can’t pass up an opportunity to study its corpse and question his followers some more. It shouldn’t take long, I’ll return when I can.” And he leaves.

The Storm Brotherhood returns to their Tranyx tavern, The Monsoon. When they do, they see a small Muse child run away. They’re too tired from their travels to follow, or really care about it for that matter. They settle in, clean their gear, and do their usual post-adventure rituals for the next few days. Brivyn takes long walks on the surface of the city with Orsen and debates how far the wind carries smells with Orsen. Laike becomes great friends with a scraggly blond woman and is about to invite her to join them adventuring when he realizes she’s just an upside down broom and perhaps he should get glasses. Mavash seeks therapy for his trying ordeals related to Dagon, but settles for talking to Ubro: The Blind Hospitaler. Bart closes his eyes and focuses, attempting to count the number of hairs on the big toe of a gnome living in Riverdale. Chiex goes around to local taverns playing his carapace-drums, but none like it as much as the goblins.

A couple of days after their return, a courier knocks on their door. She is an immaculately dressed Muse wearing the uniform that Bart and Mavash recognize as being from the Luca Academy. She hands the group a letter and orders the nicest wine on the menu while they read it.

To the Illustrious Storm Brotherhood,

You are cordially invited to attend and compete in the annual Breaching Festival here at the Academy of Luca! This is not only an opportunity to participate in one of the most exciting and talked about yearly events in all of Khedor but I would like for you to attend as this year’s special guests of honor. The only catch is that the festival itself is scheduled to begin tomorrow. I apologize for the late notice, but you have apparently been away from your main residence for sometime. My courier, Althel, has a Scroll of Greater Teleportation that can bring you here immediately if you so choose. Please come meet with me tonight. I promise that even if you don’t participate in the Breaching Festival that you will be paid well for your time.

I do look forward to meeting you.
Toff Korva”

Map

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Comments

QUESTION THREAD NOTES

Laike puts a dress on the broom and poses her in the main tavern room. He insists that she is the tavern’s mascot

The Breaching Festival started when the Dean of the School of Abjuration claimed that the traps and defenses of the Hall of Wards were so great that no thief could breach them. Over the next few hundred years, this turned into a yearly carnival like day on which a dozen or so hopefuls try to enter the famed building by whatever means they can. Yet no one has emerged victorious from the Breaching in over 150 years. This is the first time that you’ve heard of non-students being invited to participate though.

You’ll arrive midday via teleportation, but your meeting with Toff isn’t until early evening
it’s like a full carnival that vendors from all over Khedor come to
so your characters are free to make purchases there in preparation for the competition
that way you guys can level up/purchase specifically for this adventure
does the courier know if we’re the only ones entering? She says she knows that at least a student teacher is entering. Beyond that, there’s usually a handful each year but the numbers have been dwindling since no one ever wins
The courier knows that a Student Teacher is entering, have any others been invited like us? There’s a standing invitation to the Elfish Thieves Guild, but they don’t send a representative every year so the courier doesn’t know if one will be there.
To the courier, what’s the typical prize for breaching the hall? “$153,000 gold”

Arrive at the academy

Okay. The party arrives at the Academy and are immediately escorted to the headmaster’s office in Korva hall. Toff’s office is a well-organized chamber with floor to ceiling bookshelves and a large desk. The headmaster stands to welcome the guests.

“Welcome, and thank you for answering my invitation. As I’m sure you well know, the Breaching Festival is a longstanding Academy tradition, with prizes both material and magical. You might also know that entry in the contest is traditionally reserved for only the best and bravest of our students and a select few representatives of other Gorpandia organizations. This year, though, we’re changing tradition and expanding the invitations further than ever. We want the most powerful, qualified individuals to compete, in other words. It has been a century and ahalf since the last….well, the only…winner of the Breaching Festival won the prize! One of you surely must bring glory to yourself and the Academy by enduring the traps and tricks in the Hall of Wards. I’m even willing to bend the rules to allow a team of allied competitors like yourselves to cooperate as a single unit. Whatever it takes to get a winner tomorrow.”

is Toff the headmaster of the entire academy or just the hall of wards? also are we in the hall of wards now? Toff is the headmaster of the entire Academy. You are not in the Hall of Wards right now.
will we at some point get to meet the head of wards? “He is extremely busy right now, what with it being the night before the competition and all. He’ll be at the opening ceremony and, if you win, I have no doubt he’ll be involved
so were supposed to get into a specific room/area or do we just have to get into the building? “Of course. In order to enter the Hall of Wards at all, you will need a key-light. One key light is in one of the 7 other halls and is guarded in different ways. A key-light will only work for one person, so if you plan to work as a group you’ll need to collect 5 of them. This, of course, will put you behind the pace of those working individually, but will give you the added advantage of working together. We had to ammend the rules after the first winner so now you have to enter the Hall of Wards from one side and exit through the door on the opposite side of the building to win.”
“Meddling with other contestants is against the rules of the Breaching Festival. You fight the course, not the contestants.”
Who are the other contestants? There are four other competitors this year, a rather poor showing.
There’s a halfling named Fatmire who calls himself a ‘Wealth Distributor’, but we all know what that means.
The Elfish Thieves Guild sent a representative this year, Illia Ean.
A dwarven student named Knur Strongarm. I think he’s a bit unprepared as he’s only a sixth year, but we’ll see.
And the crowd favorite will definitely be Maganrad, a student teacher.
How is the competition monitored? Are there crowds watching our efforts live, or is the crowd waiting to see us shamble out defeated? “The crowds will gather and sit along the perimeter of the campus. They wouldn’t want to get any closer because of the dangers. We’ll see you running between buildings and if you win, we’ll see you exit the Hall of Wards.
but what if someone just runs behind the building and just pretends to come out the other side? how will we know if they actually did it? “Pretends to come out the other side? They’ll have to exit the door in front of everyone.”
Are there only 7 key lights total? If so, then there aren’t enough key lights to go around. “Yes, there are 7 key lights total. However, a key light resets 10 minutes after it has been taken, as well as all of the traps and wards in the room.”
so we have 10 minutes to get 5 (or 7 if the animals need their own) keys and into the main hall? “No, the resets will create duplicates.”
is there an overall time limit aside from the other competitors? “You must exit the hall by sundown in order to be declared the victor.”
and is it only the first through that wins? no shared victory if multiple entrants succeed? “That is correct. However, if you five are agreeing to work together as a team I assume you are also agreeing to split the winnings.”
If we are part way through a room at the reset time, does it reset with us in it? “No, it will not reset as long as anyone is in the room.”
How large is the hall of wards and what are the names of the halls that hold the key lights? “It is not a very large building, perhaps 60 feet by 70 feet, maybe 80. As for the other halls, they are the Hall of Summoning, Seeing, Induction, Lies, Shaping, Charms, and Whispers.”
“Is there another challenge after the supposed victor emerges the other side with a key?” “The challenge is getting through the Hall of Wards. Emerging from the opposite doors is the moment of victory.”
Is induction referring to a type of magic or just "where people are inducted into the school “It is the school that teaches evocation magic.”
of course we’ll try to be careful, but just in case, how much property damage are we liable for? Toff smirks self righteously. “You underestimate the Academy’s magical prowess. The traps are setup in such a way that any damage done to buildings is immediately reversible. And, if that weren’t the case, the contestants aren’t usually alive to pay for the damages. That being said, if you are directly responsible for damages they aren’t automatically repaired. If that situation arises, you will be held responsible for the entirety of the damages.”
Also what happens if we accidentally do something harmful to another person, is our team disqualified? “That will have to be handled on a case by case basis. But you will not receive the benefit of the doubt if your actions injure another contestant.”
so what’s the fatality rate of contestants? “I would say close to 80%”
“Can we give up at any time?” Toff sighs heavily and looks disappointed. “Yes, of course you can. No one is compelling you to do anything here. But I was hoping based on my research and your many great accomplishments that you would have the bravery and the ability to see this through to the end. It would be so very nice to see a victor while my tenure here was still active.”
“Can you tell us the story of the one victor?” “Sure. 156 years ago, a man named Dyson Fordyce -who is the only winner to date- managed to step into the Hall of Wards and just as quickly step back out, winning on a technicality. Since then, the Breaching Festival has required entry into the Hall of Wards by one door and exit from one on the opposite side of the building.”
Can we get a map
What type of magic is in each hall? Summoning: Conjuration
Seeing: Divination
Induction: Evocation
Wards: Abjuration
Lies: Illusion
Shaping: Transmutation
Charms: Enchantment
Whispers: Necromancy
What other buildings are on campus? Korva Hall: Administrative building
Staff Quarters:
Halls of Crafting: For creating magical items and potions
Student Quarters
do most people make it to the hall of wards? or are they stopped trying to get a key? He thinks it’s about 50/50.
are the defenses always up or just put up specifically for the festival?what’s to stop someone from hiding in the building before the festival starts and just coming out to win “The additional security is placed specifically for this event. Usually, the building is such that no visitor can reach any room, object, or person they are not intended to find.”“The Hall of Wards is the safest building in all of Gorpandia. If someone were able to accomplish what you have described without the staff realizing it, I daresay they deserve the title of victor regardless.”
“so what challenges await us in each Hall? I don’t design the challenges. The Dean of each school designs the challenge for their hall. The Dean of the Hall of Wards handpicks a group of talented spellcasters from the school to aid her in crafting a new series of traps and dangers. No one else knows what these wards are until the festival is underway. I can tell you that in previous years, all manner of magical traps, particularly those that summon monsters or use glyphs and wards, have been used.
“Can we complete a hall to get a key, wait 10 minutes, then complete the same hall again for another key?” No, though maybe yes, but the reset would be changed from 10 minutes to 1 hour
Will animal companions need keys too “As I didn’t design the keys or how they interact with the barrier, I can’t tell you for sure. I can say that it’s difficult to even approach the barrier to the Hall of Wards without a key, so it should become obvious as you get close to entering who or what will be able to get through.”
“So into the key rooms we should be fine. Hall of wards might be a different story. Sound about right? “Yes, that’s correct. I assume that well behaved bear in the corner is the animal companion of Mr. Brivyn here. I would guess he’ll be able to get through if Brivyn is as the souls of druids tend to become intertwined with their animal companions.”But I can’t say that for sure
What are the magical prizes? That is a bit of a surprise, actually. But no one else in Gorpandia can match the Academy’s magical creativity and ingenuity, so I promise it will be something unique.
what are these buildings made of? Stone, from what you can tell
“do you have the addresses of any previous participants?” “None of the surviving contestants are still enrolled at the Academy. I haven’t heard from any of them on whether or not they plan to attend tomorrow.”

Past Challenges Thread

Mavash goes streetwising for information on the past challenges Mavash finds out that some of the most memorable moments from the past 5 years of competition were when two people raced for a key light in the Hall of Summoning, only for the winner to be transported to another plane, never to be seen again. A particularly clever member of the thieves guild had thought he had bypassed a trap successfully in the Evocation school, but had really bypassed the building’s protections against the magic and the entire building blew up. The story that comes up again and again, however, is when the Hall of Shaping rigged all of their mundane office supplies to attack the contestants, and a third year Muse student was stapled to death.
Rolls 25 diplomacy Mavash is unavailable for any other scenes.

Sizing up the Competition

So rest of group goes to size up the competition. Inquiring things like:
Why’d they send you? (if they’re from a group)
What makes you think you’ve got what it takes?
Would your next of kin want us to retrieve your remains if it’s possible?
How have you been preparing for this event?
Illia is a slim, homely elfish woman with brown that looks like it’s been self-cut by a dull knife without a mirror. Her nose has been broken more than once in her thieving. She dresses in loose-fitting clothes, and carries herself like one who knows her way around a fight. She doesn’t seem to care for the party much, but she’s not being overtly rude.

“I’m good”;

“I’m very good.” ;

“I’ve got no family.” ;

“Magical trap training.”

STRATEGY DISCUSSION

do we want to split up to save time during the key phase?
I’m actually thinking it might be better if we split into teams based off each hall. I’m trying to make Mavash really good at 1-2
mavash: I’m also gonna try and buy a few niche items that might help in a few scenarios

Possible Items to buy

Bead of Newt prevention for preventing polymorph 1000gp
Gloves of Trapspringing bonus to disabling traps, disallowed unless handmade yourself 4000gp
Adventure 7: Prologue
Random11 nyw11

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