Monday, May 9, 2016

Player character information in Port Llast

Since a good deal of information was conveyed today over email in response to player questions, I wanted to consolidate my replies here such that they can be reviewed easily leading up to this week's session.

Rumolt and the Orcs of the Yellow Eye

As to Rumolt, he seems little known in Port Llast, but a few individuals are able to corroborate his story based on secondhand hearsay (no one seems to know him well personally - Port Llast clearly isn't his home). At the eastern edge of town, a series of game trails leads to a lodge (a day or so away) that serves as a base camp of sorts for local hunters and woodsmen. Presumably, any venture deep into Neverwinter Wood would travel there first. This information is given based on Lincoln's layover in Port Llast during the last session, and presumably shared with the rest of the group.

I'm not sure there's enough available evidence in Port Llast to definitively say that Rumolt is or is not being completely truthful. He doesn't seem to be known in town (again, not a local resident), having arrived about a tenday ago (shortly before the PCs) bearing wounds/scars and claiming that his band from Neverwinter had been decimated by orcs in the forest. He, Rumolt, was the sole escapee (I think this is mostly what raised the other players' suspicions, but I'm not certain) and claims to have trailed the orcs back to their lair prior to retreating to Port Llast, the nearest attainable safe harbor. Rumolt professes to seek both vengeance against the Yellow Eye tribe and reclamation of what he can of his fallen comrades (equipment, bodies...).

It's clear that the man has money, tossing gold around liberally and offering a large sum for aid (and likely knowing that acquiring truly capable help will demand serious payment). He stated his band to be game seekers, though when questioned further he elaborated that his experience went beyond hunting mere animals. If he's not in actuality a competent adventurer of some kind, he does a good job masquerading as one.

As to the orcs, Lincoln doesn't really learn anything. The forest is massive and littered with tribes of malicious denizens (remember that Wolford, at the beginning of the campaign and in the same forest, though several dozen miles away and in a different direction, was having problems with goblin tribes encroaching on the mining village). That Rumolt has knowledge of the "Orcs of the Yellow Eye" puts him in a higher circle, information-wise, than the commoners of Port Llast. Whether this knowledge is rooted in his experience with his former companions and/or other sources is unclear.

The Inlet and the Water Naga

As to the naga, there's not been an additional sighting during the time the party was away. Meaning, no one else has claimed the reward, but neither is the creature known to still be in the vicinity. It's a crapshoot, basically. (These kinds of things are decided by dice rolls, FYI, with me determining the chances based on my knowledge of the campaign world.)

Wren knows that water nagas, while not typically aggressive or malevolent, are creatures to be feared. Their bites are poisonous and they often have the ability to manifest wizard-like powers, making them a serious threat to seafaring vessels if provoked or for some reason intent on forcing an encounter. In real-world terms, the situation is similar to having a dangerous shark in frequently-traveled waters. The creature isn't necessarily out for blood, but its presence is considered a danger, thus the offered bounty. The fact that the inlet would be an atypical environment (water nagas are usually found in freshwater lakes and streams) could also result in it being agitated or behaving unpredictably.

Despite knowing the above, Wren has no firsthand experience with water nagas, given that her adventuring time has been spent at sea, where such creatures wouldn't be found.

The inlet connects Port Llast to the Sea of Swords. Investigating it, presumably, would involve securing a ship or boat of some kind, through purchase/rental/theft/etc. or petitioning a captain willing to help out for a share of the bounty (or some such). At that point, as mentioned earlier, it's a bit of a crapshoot. The creature was spotted... a tenday ago, or thereabouts? Is it still around? If so, would the party be able to find, let alone combat it? I'm not trying to deter this course, per se, but I think it's right of me to say that it may or may not prove lucrative, depending on rolls made, rolls yet to be made, and the party's choices.

Setting out with Rumolt would involve heading east, away from Port Llast and the inlet... so there's not really a way of "killing two birds with one stone" here. Presumably the efforts would need to be carried out in succession - though Rumolt has stated his intention to return to Neverwinter at dawn if he doesn't secure help in Port Llast before then.

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