The Horror

Abominable [The Vault # 23]

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The Horrors wait. They ruled once. Whether they left or were driven away is unknown. What is certain is that they wish to return. Some say such a return is inevitable. Woe to all mankind if that is true...

This week we finish up our cycle dealing with the Horrors. Below, partake of 20 Titles to add flavor and terrible power to these new antagonists:

  1. _The Gibbering Dread_ (#Gib) It belches a cacophony of mad voices, which can be stemmed only by death. > :Music: and :Magic: abilities suffer a -2 to rolls while the gibbering thing lives.

  2. _The Grotesque_ (#Grot) Hideous to behold, this thing's insides are on the exterior. The smell matches the sight. > All abilities used against it except :Influence: and :music: suffer a -2 to :roll:.

  3. _Half-Dead_ (#HalfDead) After eons even death may die...this one is waking again to life. > Reduce Tier by 1 and hp by 3.

  4. _The Unhinged_ (#Unhinged) Some of the Horrors are cold and calculating, others quite mad. > Gains +1 damage to attacks. Every other round :roll:. On a 10 or above it attacks another encounter card in addition to the :adventurers:.

  5. _The Raving_ (#Raving) Compelling in its terror and power, for the line between madness and genius is a fine one. > :Influence: abilities suffer -2 to rolls while the raving one is alive.

  6. _Mindeater_ (#Mindeater) Bodies aren't the only things that can be devoured. > Every :adventurer: who rolls a 5, 10, or 15 on an ability suffers a loss of 1 Persona. The Mindeater gains 2 hp from each Persona devoured.

  7. _Contagion's Consort_ (#Contagion) It's mere glance inflicts weakness upon others. > The :adventurer: with the lowest roll each round suffers -1 to rolls and loses 1 hp.

  8. _Dream Dweller_ (#DDweller) Even if vanquished physically, it'll continue to haunt you. > Physical death doesn't destroy it, only banish it for a time.

  9. _The Chained Lord_ (#ChainedL) It has one foot in this world, but is still partially chained in another. > Each round :roll: once before resolving damage to adventurers. On a 5, 10, or 15, the :horror: can't deal damage to one adventurer.

  10. _Realm Reaver_ (#RReaver) Space warps about it. > When an adventurer :roll: a 5, 10, or 15, their ability affects another :adventurer: as well as the intended target.

  11. _The Servile_ (#Servile) Cowed in mind and spirit, it knows only to serve strength. > An :adventurer: with max Persona can intimidate it into service or flight on a :roll: of 10 or above.

  12. _Soul Stealer_ (#SStealer) It keeps what it kills. > Slain :adventurer:s become Tier 1 :horror:s the round after being reduced to 0 hp.

  13. _Many Mouthed_ (#MMouthed) So many fangs, so much hunger... > Any :adventurer: making a :melee: attack against the Many-Mouthed suffers 1 hp damage.

  14. _Gelatinous_ (#Gel) It would be easy to drown in its depths. > The :horror: has 2 fewer hp. Those attacking it with :melee: abilities or who take damage this round suffer an extra point of damage.

  15. _Nightmare_ (#Nightmare) It seems to take the form of what you fear most. > Any :adventurer: attacking the Nightmare this round suffers -3 to their rolls. On a 1, they also lose their next action (in addition to whatever normal ability failure occurs).

  16. _Terror Tyrant_ (#TTyrant) Fear is the foundation of all tyranny, and often its motivator, too. > The first round of combat, :adventurers: below base persona cannot use abilities.

  17. _The Inscrutable_ (#Inscrutable) How does one defeat a foe with unreadable features? > All :adventurers: suffer -1 to all rolls against it, both combat and skill checks.

  18. _The Compelling_ (#Compelling) It seems to know your every mood and intention and is unperturbed by all. > Its allies increase in Tier value by half while it lives (do not round up).

  19. _The Devourer_ (#Dev) Fear not the one who can devour only the flesh, but the one who can consume both mind and soul...> On a :roll: of 5, 10, or 15, on abilities, :adventurer:s lose 1 :loot: or 3 hp.

  20. _Fleshfuser_ (#FleshF) Slamming into one of you, the :horror: begins to meld with you. > The adventurer with the lowest ability :roll: is bound to the creature, taking half the damage dealt to it next round.

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* Confused by the formatting of the list? The _underscores_ (#hashtags) :icons: and > Special instruction scripts are provided for the ease of Quest Authors, who can copy and paste these directly into the Quest Creator to save time. 

Horrorscapes [The Vault #19]

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Dream vistas twisted by alien intelligences of frightening power. Environs out of Nightmare. Lands inimical to the continued life of thinking races. All these and more dwell in the provinces of the Horrors. Many have been catalogued by brave and foolhardy wizards. Some have only been spoken of during palaver with the Fae and the shades of the Dead. Few have been survived. The Codex of ibn Al-Kazad relates twenty such locations:

  1. _Cloud Castle_ (#CC) Large, black, and ominous... > Perception :ranged: :roll:s must be made each cycle around the table. Failure means the :adventurer: falls through a thinness in the cloudfloor or wall, suffering 3 hp of damage OR 1 Persona loss.

  2. _Deathlight Spire_ (#DSpire) The darkness beaming from it's pinnacle steals the minds from all things it touches. You watch a flock of birds cease their flight and plummet... > Approaching the Spire is difficult and must be done between the cycling of the deathlight. An athletics :melee: check of 13+ is required or 1 Persona is lost. If Persona hits minimum the mind of the :adventurer: is stolen by the light, as their body crumples into coma.

  3. _Crystal Caverns_ (#CCaverns) Stalagmites as large as humans litter the floor. Twisted simulacrums of the adventurers leer from their surfaces. > On a failed Persona check a simulacrum of the victim leaps from the crystal. It has half the hp of the :adventurer: and uses 1 ability drawn at random from the type(s) known by the :adventurer:.

  4. _Spore Halls_ (#Spore) A long corridor covered in fungal blooms. > Make a Perception :ranged: check. For every multiple of 5 draw 1 :magic mushroom: encounter cards. They take -1 damage and deal +1 damage while in the Hall.

  5. _The Writhing Plains_ (#WPlains) Spoken of by the surviving members of The Shining Band before they were committed to an asylum. They related a tale of a farmer's field, covered not in stalks of corn, but in grasping tentacles. > Passage through the plains requires 3 successful Athletics :melee: checks of 10+. Each failure results in loss of 1 Loot OR 2 hp.

  6. _Sucking Sands_ (#SSands) Stand still for any length of time and you're dead. It is as though something follows beneath the sands, but at a pace just slower than one can walk. > Traversing the sands requires 3 successful Endurance :melee: or :music: checks of 8+. Failure results in being sucked below the sands for 4 hp damage and combat with a foul horror.

  7. _Hairy Hole_ (#HH) The Devil's Navel, some call it. It quivers at your touch, but you see not what lies below. > Make a Persona :roll: of 11+. On failure you're compelled to enter and lose 1 Persona. On success it belches forth 1 random Loot item.

  8. _The House of Hieronymous_ (#SHouse) A vast shell, large as a small castle, now vacant. Lesser creatures live inside it now... >

  9. _Serpentskin Tunnel_ (#SS) You realize you're not in a tunnel adorned with glistening mosaic walls. Rather, this is the molted skin of a vast, dread serpent! > Make a Persona check or enter a trance induced by the glittering scales. Suffer -3 to all checks until you take damage. If combat is initiated, entranced :adventurer: s must attack another adventurer on the first round.

  10. _Dreadhome_ (#Dhome) An immense cube floating in the sky. Every few decades cyclopean stones move and shift along its surface. Sometimes things exit to bedevil the world, or plummet to gory and enigmatic deaths. > On the approach to the Cube, make a Notice :roll: of 9+. On a failure, you are attacked by 2 :nightgaunts: for each person who failed the :roll:. On a 1, the :adventurer: is also struck by a falling body (or flying body parts from impact) for 3 hp damage.

  11. _Incubation Plain_ (#IPlain) Barren plains scorched by sun and salt crystals, hatched eggs as tall as two and three story houses litter the flats. One remains, surrounded by a tentscape of adoring cultists. A ritual is about to take place atop "the One". > If the :adventurers cannot stop the 5 :Acolytes: from completing the ritual in 5 rounds, a :Cthulhi: comes forth.

  12. _The Sloar!_ (#Sloar) It's not a smoking cavern. It's the belly of a terrible beast. Like the Keymaster said, "Many shubs and zools knew what it was like to be roasted in the depths of the Sloar that day, I can tell you!" > Every round in the Sloar one suffers 1 hp of damage. Two successful Climb :melee: checks of 11+ must be made to escape back up it's gullet.

  13. _Horror Flats_ (#HFlats) The flat landscape is pocked with holes the size of wagons. Gore lingers at the edges of some. Something came from below... > Whatever foe you encounter while traversing the Flats gets a free attack against the adventurers (resolve no abilities the first round).

  14. _HellMist Hall_ (#HMHall) A venerable manor, shrouded in mists without and within. Where are they coming from? Why won't daylight dissipate them? Why do you feel so...odd? > The mists distort :music: abilities. Failure on their :roll: is treated as a "1" :roll: instead.

  15. _The ShieldWall_ (#SWall) It stands higher and thicker than a skyscraper. What was it meant to keep out? Luckily the lifts still work...for now.

  16. _The Annihilation Arch_ (#Arch) Majestic and horrific at once, sacrifices are thrown from it into the mouth of a vast, sleeping terror far below. If it could be held against it's fanatical worshipers, the terror below might be starved to death...

  17. _Webwoods_ (#WebW) If only those that spun them were spiders... > Any :roll: of 5, 10, or 15 results in the adventurer being ensnared in a web. Next round they take 1 extra hp in damage and suffer -3 to ability rolls.

  18. _The Voidswamp_ (#Void) An unnatural vacuum above the swampy surface makes all breathing impossible. > No sound travels in the void. :Music: abilities do not function here, and :magic: abilities suffer -3 to rolls.

  19. _The Trackless Dream_ (#Dream) In this place all objects return to their prior form. Nothing inanimate can be truly destroyed here. > Any :loot: spent or destroyed mysteriously re-forms two rounds later.

  20. _The Quaking Caverns_ (#QCaverns) They are constantly moving and shifting, perpetually threatening to bury anyone traveling through them. > Two Perception :ranged: checks and two Athletics :melee: checks of 9+ are required to come out of the caverns. Each time a Perception :ranged: check is failed the adventurer who failed is separated from the party and must fight a Tier I Encounter card. Each time an Athletics :melee: check is failed, the adventurer suffers 2 hp damage from moving walls and falling stone.

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Malevolent Mysteries [The Vault #18]

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"The Horror" is upon you!  Most of you have it in your possession as I write. If not, it lurks, waiting to take you unawares! Of course this means some of you may be pricked with the peculiar madness to craft your own horror-themed quests. Yesterday's "Forge" entry should help with that, and we're not going to stop there. Provided below are 20 plot seeds for your Horrific protagonists:

  1. _Parasitic Peril_ (#Peril) During the greatest Feast Day in the kingdom, infected meats risk making many commoners hosts to larval horrors.

  2. _Predictable Prophets_ (#Prophets) A mad prophet wielding fell powers has enthralled and terrified a village.

  3. _Pharaonic Family of Ra_ (#Ra) A cult of inept dandies seeks to summon a divine being. They awake a Horror instead.

  4. _Sky Beast_ (#Sky) It lives, tentacled, in the clouds. Poisonous rains are the only warning and herald of its approach.

  5. _Minister of Madness_ (#Minister) All he wants to do is teach, and his students have grown to be many. Some are even old associates of the adventurers.

  6. _Dark Deals_ (#Deals) With the adventurers on the verge of death in battle, a horror rips them out of time and space to propose a way out. For a price.

  7. _The Ancient Door_ (#Door) Cyclopean and foreboding, it has stood unopened since the foundation of the city. Now, though, a crack has appeared in the door, terrible light spilling out. Most the light touches become dangerously homicidal. What will occur if it springs fully wide?

  8. _The Offer_ (#Offer) A strange, mighty, and unknown magus instructs the adventurers in the ways of power. The price of such power is sanity, forfeited one bit at a time.

  9. _Unhinged_ (#Unhinged) A riddle keeps driving sages and scholars insane, but leaving it unresolved could cost the kingdom everything.

  10. _Personality_ (#Personality) A pacifistic leader is impregnating his willing followers, with twins, but one of each pair may not be human.

  11. _Dark Waters_ (#Waters) Something from the depths keeps visiting, taking others back to the deep with them. Curiously, it always leaves its victims' left hands behind on the shore.

  12. _The Bower_ (#Bower) They want to make their home here, in the greatest Tower constructed by man. Closed doors seem incapable of keeping them in or out...

  13. _Terraforming_ (#Terra) "Invasive Species" threaten to overtake the area, one bulbous, mold encrusted tree at a time.

  14. _Communion_ (#Comm) The adventurers manifest strange powers, but with each use the fabric of reality frays.

  15. _Eaters of the Dead_ (#Eaters) The local cemeteries are being defiled, bits and pieces of the exhumed dead left behind. Their eaters are slowly becoming more human, with all the memories of the eaten. To what lengths will people go to be reunited with departed loved ones?

  16. _The Thousand Young_ (#Young) A cavern has been found that contains enormous eggs. No one knows the species, or what may come out if they hatch.

  17. _Trojan Tentacles_ (#Trojan) Judging by the custodian's remains and the shattered glass case, the ancient and foreboding statue in the museum may not have been a statue. That means all the companion statues in the excavated city being unearthed nearby may in fact be an army. What set the first loose? How can the others be contained?

  18. _The Legacy_ (#Legacy) The adventurers unearth evidence that the monarchs of most countries are not entirely human, and some may be in the service of more ancient, even less human masters.

  19. _Dreamstalker_ (#Dream) People are dying in their sleep, horrific marks appearing on their bodies from out of nowhere. Can the adventurers find the dreamstalker and stop them?

  20. _The Triangle_ (#Triangle) A shipping lane once vital to the commerce of many nations has been swallowing up all ships that brave its waters. Can the adventurers find the cause and stop it?

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Drinking to Horror [The Forge #7]

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We received a few community requests for this one, so here it is...Many of Lovecraft's characters turned to the bottle to deal with the terrors they'd uncovered in the dark. Ultimately, it didn't help them much, but here is a simple mod to make Expedition a drinking game. If you're 21+ and capable of drinking responsibly, you may want to toast to the spirit of "The Horror" this month. Every time you see the word "horror" (while playing Expedition with friends), you have to drink.  Whenever your adventurer loses a Persona point, you drink.  

But that's not all we've got for this week's Forge...you have it in your hands...a dark compulsion to play tickles your psyche, hinting at thrills and terrors to come. Here are some suggestions for enhancing your Horror-themed quest. 

Adding Art

With the Kickstarter for "The Horror", we were able to allow addition of art to the Quest Creator. There are two ways you can do this...

Below is how you script for custom art you may have made yourself as a PNG file (note that at this point we will have to add it to the database first). There is a little bit more to this process--and I am not a graphic artist--but perhaps in the future our staff artist might be able to give pointers as to what colors work in the app. 

Art.PNG

In the Quest Creator,  you'll want to have the normal Card prompt _Gardener and Hound_ (#Caretaker), then the [raventree_manor_png_full] produces the following picture in app.  You won't want to include any text if you're using a picture like this, given the size of phone screens, so do add that _continue_ to kick it over to the next screen. 

Art2.PNG
Art3.PNG

There is something that might throw you, though, if you're using the Art Repository we've created. You won't put the _png_ for existing art.  The script at the bottom for the [hound_of_tindalos_full] accesses that existing art. Here is another link to the full list available.  And we see how "little Tindy" looks in app to the right. 

Most of our default icons are in black font, so if you are scripting something that is going to appear in the Combat Simulator of the app (which has a black background), you'll want to make sure you enable the white font.  Here is how you do that:

Instead of :roll: (which would give us a black font on black background), we script :roll_white: .

You can see the difference...

WhiteIcon.PNG

You can also get white text for ability and encounter icons ( :magic_white: , :beast_white: , etc.). 

Finally, you've seen the Persona mechanic...In the course of several hours of playtesting, allow us to offer the advice that when you play, if you want to make full use of the Persona boosts, be sure to play multiple adventurers that have Influence abilities.  If only one member of the party has one Influence ability, it may be difficult for you to bump the Persona up to ever get Max.  Authors, be sure when writing "Horror" themed quests to allow for skill checks or choices that can increase Persona, not just those that decrease it.   

Of course, players could institute a House rule that any critical success (roll of 20) automatically increases the Persona of the adventurer who rolled it by 1. 

We can't wait to see what you come up with and happy questing! 

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