DeathStorm I
The desert wasteland, long devoid of life, has suddenly been covered by a ferocious storm. part of the storm is moving, leaving a trail of destruction in its wake. And it's heading this way. (1987)
DeathStorm II
More storms have been sighted, and they too leave destruction in their wake. Two of them are headed this way. You've got to move fast to stop them. (1987)
DeathStorm III
There are more storms than originally imagined. The only way to stop them is to destroy the source and to do that, a storm must be captured and controlled. (1987)

DeathStorm V - The True Threat
The great storm over the desert is producing death storms faster than you can take them down. Your party must destroy the source of these storms before the entire land is destroyed. (1987)

DeathStorm VI
The great storm has fallen, the fight is ended. If that's true, what is that spot on the horizon? Don't worry, it's becoming smaller. It's only your worst enemy escaping!
Neoparzenon, a powerful Fighter/Wizard Lich controlled one of the most powerful DeathStorms. His storm fortress is driven to the ground, but Neoparzenon survives. Along with a number of his powerful Dragons. (1988)

DeathStorm VII
The great wyrm, Holepuncher is gone, slain by Zenier & his band in Neoparzenon's fallen storm. But the mission to capture Neoparzenon failed & he escaped. We're going back, and this time he's ours.
This game ran three times that year, and each one ended in total defeat. Many fell victim to Neoparzenon's traps, and others to his spells. Only one, Nikro, survived and escaped. All of the fallen bodies were returned to Nikro except Zenier. The poor Paladin's body was kept by Neoparzenon as a trophy. (1989)

DeathStorm VIII
Neoparzenon has moved his base of operations, and forced a large group of undead to follow him. The worst news is, his most powerful minion is a Death Knight, by the name of Zenier.
Zenier has been transformed into a Death Knight, and has a Nightmare for a mount. The battle in the valley goes badly for Zenier, and he escapes to the Ethereal Plane on his Nightmare. Neoparzenon is finally destroyed in a fiery battle. (1990)

DeathStorm IX
Divination has found that Zenier's found a home on the Ethereal Plane. A group of Githyanki are planning an assault on the Prime Material Plane, and an Ethereal base seems the perfect place to plan their suprise.
A small army of Githyanki and a few minions later, Zenier is captured, and Andir Zith is dead. Andir is Reincarnated during the battle, and comes back in the body of a Gith. Zenier is Resurrected, but remembers all the evil he's done. The Red Dragon, Sterno, escapes in the assault. (1991)

DeathStorm X
A 2-part adventure, part 1.
Zenier remembers all of the evil he's done, but he also remembers the Githyanki plot. He leads his old friends across the Ethereal Plane to the Githyanki main assult base. It's defended by a shield of Negative energy, and very lethal. The adventurers make it to the heart of the fortress, and destroy the crystal which they think energizes the shield. It actually keeps it at bay, and the shield starts to collapse.
Sterno activates a gate that summons the Ethereal Wind, and a rift opens. Sterno escapes through it, and the party follows.

A 2-part adventure, part 2.
The heroes find themselves in a beautiful grove with an unusual sky. A large city thrives under a thick, clear dome, and Sterno is loose somewhere. Giants, Kirin, and even Mind Flayers all coexist here. The party uncovers a Githyanki underground operating out of a gambling casino, and is awarded one of the Gith Astral Flying Ships by the Baron. (1992)

DeathStorm XI
The Baron didn't realize that he'd awarded the heroes with a Plane-Shifting Spell-Jamming ship. The helmsman accidentally shifts the ship to the Prime Material Plane, and they find themselves in the middle of an Insectare/Elven war. They attempt and assault on an Insectare battle station, rescue an Elven Admiral from the insectare's cells (leaving them at their ship in the landing bay), and succeed in disabling the space station (ok, so a heavy rip off of Star Wars, it was fun!). (1993)

DeathStorm XII
The party needed to escape the station before the Insectare fleet returned, but when they returned to the landing bay, they found their ship gone. A Doppleganger had been part of their original crew (an enemy from the Astral city) and he stole their ship, and the Admiral. They then had to piece together a ship and catch the Doppleganger before it could reach the fleet and really cause trouble. (1993)

DeathStorm XIII
The fact that they stopped the Doppleganger earned them high points with the Elven Fleet. In return, the Elves offered to repair their Spell-Jamming ship (for reduced rates!) and figure out how the Plane-Shifting helm worked. Of course, that was going to take some time, so it would be nice if they could find out why the Insectares were so interested in Floritem.
The group finds a destroyed Insectare Fleet (over 20 ships) on a barren plain. Searching found survivor's tracks, and a trail that led to a lonely set of three mountain peaks. Nestled near their tops was a huge nest, and a rather large fight with the surviving Insectares, over a large eggshell. It turns out that the 300' wingspanned bird that lived here had tough shells, and the Insectares wanted them badly. Our heroes got them instead, and they make great hull-plating (light, and metal-tough). (1994)

DeathStorm XIV
The Elves are happy, the heroes have a newly armored ship, and they're actually in the correct Crystal Sphere and can go home (ok, I decided to be nice on this point). There's only one condition: the party's home planet doesn't know about Spell-Jamming (except for the Elves, of course) and they want to keep it that way. The group must find a safe hiding place for their ship, and decide on a secluded string of islands.
The world being the way it is of course, the island is inhabited by pirates. And not just ordinary pirates, but with powerful wizards for leaders, and a lot of alchemy at their disposal. The heroes do win the island, but with heavy loses. The leader blowing up his own house with the adventurers in it was a nice stroke. (1995)

DeathStorm XV
As it turned out, a giant sea-dragon lived beneath the island. It didn't care about the humans living above, as long as they paid tribute. It provided the pirates with a great defense from local navies. As their own ships started getting attacked, they tracked the problem to the caves below, and confronted the great dragon.
Zenier actually confronted the dragon alone at one point, and tried to lure the creature into an ambush -- it almost worked . Not only did the party destroy the dragon, they rescued a number of Triton prisoners. The prisoners kept the local Triton tribes in check. Their rescue gave the party new friends and allies in the area. (1996)

DeathStorm XVI
OOPS. We apparently missed one - we'll have to come back to it - any requests? . (199?)

DeathStorm XVII
The party's Klick-Klack is finished at the Elven repair yard. This is located out near the farthest reaches of near-space, so it's a long, fairly uneventful trip. Raiders seemed to be on holiday until the shipyard was reached. The raiders hit it hard, and took their booty, leaving traps, assault troops, and other nasties behind, not to mention some station defenses. The party managed to clear out most of the nasties, and rescue a number of injured and trapped Elves. The toughest problem was a shape-changing Demon, impersonating an Elven Priestess. The surviving Elves asked our heroes to chase after the raiders, and return any prisoners they could, and very important stolen magic items. (1997)

DeathStorm XVIII
The adventurers chased after the bandits. As they say, "A stern chase is a long chase". The trip took time, and managed repairs on their ships along the way. The rear-guard of the bandits was beaten, and their Hammership taken. Using it as cover, the party managed to catch up to the bulk of the Bandit Fleet (5 ships!) and attack it. They captured the lead ship (a Dragonship) and killed the bandit captain, but the other ships escaped, and were lost in the Flow. The heroes lost thier ships, however, and helmsmen. (1997)

DeathStorm XIX -- DeathStorm XX -- 1998
Ah, this adventure didn't quite work out as expected. The group did succeed at their first mission; they rescued some of their Spell Jamming ships and some of their crew. However, while in the castle of the Baroness, Zenier got his throat ripped out, and was barely healed enough to survive. Andir Zith managed to get his hands stuck to the same weapon held by Hornig, and they're still both stuck to it.

DeathStorm XXI -- 1999
They now have a new mission: seperate their newly connected comrades.  The advisor they hired away from the Baroness tells them how to remove the powerful curse.  The heroes must travel to the Pascale Mountains and retrieve part of the Great Egg.  They find that crushing a large Dragon Egg with the Halberd frees them from the curse, and the Great Dragon that lives there is just too big to try to fight.  They end up escaping down through Ogre caves, combatting both Ogre Gladiators, and the recently escaped arena fodder prisoners.

DeathStorm XXII -- 1999
The party takes their remaining spelljamming ships to an orbiting station under the control of the Baroness.  Not only do they find the two captured wizards, Ross and Steven, but also a self-aware Squidship with a Life-Helm (Ross enclosed).  They rescue the wizards, but get rid of the Squidship.  It's just a bit too evil for them.  They don't figure this out until Galbrith steps into the Life-Helm and loses a level (including his HEAL SPELL!) but saves the party.

DeathStorm XXIII -- 2000
Our Heroes are out of that troublesome Sphere.  They've travelled home, and are now approaching their home island base in the Amber Sea.  We've lost all but our original ship, The Survivor, and are just happy to be home.
In their absense, the island was taken over by pirates.  They were easily destroyed, but they had opened up unknown tunnels below the island.  Elementals were creating a permanent portal to our plane, and an Elemental Lord was beaten before he could finish his plan.

DeathStorm XXIV -- 2001

The island nearest the Spelljammer hideout was inhabited by peaceful natives.  Tribes of giants got together and destroyed them.  There is an abandoned, hidden, Giant city on the island, and the Giant priests had plans for it.  The players actually started out as Hill Giants, searching the city for treasures.  They discovered that the priest plans don't benefit the Hill Giant race, and decided to stop them.  The PC Hill Giants attempted to stop the Fire, Frost, and Stone Giants, and after many well thought out attacks finally got trounced.  The Giants are destroyed in a bloody finale.

Across the island, the DeathStorm heroes came ashore.  They were soon greeted by the sole Hill Giant survivor who asked for help.  The Hill Giant joined the heroes in the attacks on the other Giants, and they found that the priests were attempting to raise a sleeping Giant Diety.  The ceremony with the 3 Giant Priests progressed as the party attacked the observing giants.  They finally managed to stop the ceremony, taking some heavy losses.  (1 dead in the first running of the game, and 4 dead, 3 down, in the second running of the game)

DeathStorm XXV -- 2002

The game began 5 rounds before last year's game ended.  The party was still fighting the 3 Giant Priests, and everyone was seriously injured.  No sooner had the giants fallen, with most of the party down and the survivors barely standing, another group of fresh Frost Giants appeared on the balcony.  Looks of defeat spread across the party, but they fought on.  Bormar the Illusionist stepped forward and started casting, only to be totally destroyed by 5 well thrown giant boulders.  As the other survivors moved forward (or dove for cover), and the giants prepared to pulverize someone else, a Fireball struck them from behind, dropping each and every one of them.  A female Gnome stepped forward and asked, "Do you guys need help?".  Bianca, a Gnome Sorceress, was answering their ad for a new member.

The giants on the island are dead, but the Stone Giant's High Priestess knows the location of this island, and has an ancient map to its location.  The party snuck into the giant city through the sewer system.  The less said about the sewers, the better.  Modified permanent Blade Barriers helped keep air flowing through them, but travel was still difficult (and many fell ill from the filth).  Encounters included Giant Rats (12' long), a 120' Centipede, and an Alligator that swallowed Dunham in one bite (his Lighting Bolt from his staff gave the creature some massive indigestion).  The first group (the game ran twice) lost their only cleric in the sewers 4 hours into the 8 hour game.  It was their only death, but since they couldn't bring him back, it made the rest of the adventure very difficult.  The second group lost Dunham in the sewers (in the belly of the beast), but one of the clerics was able to raise him before they ventured up into the Giant Temple.

The temple itself was protected by an Unhallow spell.  The effect attached to this spell was an Invisibility Purge.  This surprised the invisible scouts that would calmly wander into the central courtyard containing giants only to 'blip' into visibility.  In addition, the parties' actions in the sewers clogged up the system somewhat, and routine checks alerted the city guard that 'something' was in the tunnels.  For the temple, the 'hunt was on', and many long-duration defensive spells were in place.  The High Priestess was a challenge, especially with the second group.  The first 3 rounds of combat went:  Destruction (ST failed), Destruction (ST failed), Disintegration (ST failed)--- front row of fighters down.  The single body-guard was then dropped, and instead of rushing the Priestess (beyond the now unguarded doorway) the party scattered about the outer room.  Round 4: Mass Heal.  The body-guard was now up again, and the main fighters were gone.  They actually managed to drop him a second time (thanks to flanking rogues), and again waited for the Priestess to emerge.  She did, glowing with active spells.  One amazing Dispel Magic later (5 of her 10 personal spells were dropped), she was finally susceptible to the party's magic.  One dead priestess and one looted vault later, the party teleported out.

Both parties accomplished their missions.  The priestess was killed beyond a Raise Dead, and the ancient map was discovered and destroyed.  Congratulations to both groups, they both played great games.

DeathStorm XXVI

The Heroes of the Death Storms have returned to their island base and are resuming their comfortable lives.  The shipping trade routes are thriving (boosted by two ships with Helms hidden inside), and the money is rolling in.  The heroes are, for the moment, content to guard their shipments from pirates and sea monsters.  The latest marauder attack is not a simple pirate, however, and does not bode well for our heroes.  Especially Nikro, who it seems now has a price on his head..
The Stone Giant Priestess left behind some scrolls which helped the surviving priests discover Nikro's identity, the shipping company, and his general location. Bounty-hunters of all types converged on the region.  This included forged 'Wanted Posters' with the seal of King Veldrane III ordering the group's arrest. 
Once arrested by Captain Argonus, a Paladin of Tyr, the group was treated as guests upon his ship.  When the Admiral ship arrived, the party was without weapons... and the disguised Minotaur crew attacked with abandon.  One headless captain, and two sunk ships later, the crew headed home to find their island retreat had also been discovered.
While the party stopped Ogres & a Giant priest from emptying their storage warehouse, a Mind Flayer had lunch on Dunham & Andir Zith, with Ozzl for dessert.  A large group of Stone Giants, led by a Stone Giant Priestess were marching up the back-side of the island.  The party attacked them (Bianca attacked all by herself at one point) and a bloody battle finished the adventure. 

DeathStorm XXVII

With the Stone Giant Priests finished, and the location of the island safe, it's time to relax.  Then the extortion begins. The Mind Flayer that escaped is demanding the kind of gold that will allow him to live a long, comfortable life, in exchange for his silence. You've held him off this long, but when sails begin appearing on the horizon, and Nikro's picture is still on wanted posters, enough is enough.
The Illithid, Illix-Ktarak, left instructions for delivering money to him. The group was to drop the money on the roof of a lighthouse. A teleportation circle had been placed there, and Ozzle hid inside the money chest and was teleported to a city called Bilkarfin. Once there, he slipped out and discovered the location of Illix-Ktarak's business. The party caught up to Ozzle and proceeded to trash his alchemy shop. The Iron Golem put up a tough fight, but the Drow was easily bought off and left the group to the shop. They went below and found the floating home of the Illithid.
While searching for Illix-Ktarak, they set off alarms which brought a neighboring Beholder to investigate. As he called for Illix or Kas, he drew the party out of the floating citadel and turned his anti-magic eye on Galbrith's flying attack. The heroes watching from the platform watched Galbrith's 100' drop, as did the Beholder. As the Beholder's body rotated forward, his 10 eyes rolled forward and let loose on the group. Using Ozzle as a missile weapon, they managed to killed the Beholder, and proceeded to clean out the fortress. Finally, Illix returned and used his considerable spellcasting ability to run the party in circles. They finally trapped him with a Dimensional Anchor and killed him, but not until after many of the group had died: Jessy Nor, Nikro, Ozzl, and Zenier was fried twice.

DeathStorm XXVIII

Illix-Ktarak had a partner, Kas. His name had been called out by the beholder last year. While the party killed Illix-Ktarak, it also financially hurt Kas. Kas has not forgotten. Kas has taken the last year to study the group, and determine their weaknesses. He's also started a casino in Bilkarfin to build up his cash funds. After a year, his plans are in place. Kas slipped into the island home of the DeathStormers, and laid a number of Teleportation Circle traps. He added illusions to lure in various heroes. As the group members individually stepped into the traps, they were teleported to an obstacle course laid out by Kas. With the aid of scrying spells, the customers of the casino could watch and bet on the successes or failures of the group. The course had a Teleportation Funnel spell in place, which forced any teleporting people or objects back to the beginning. As the party worked through the challenges, a dragon's-hoard of gold changed hands.

The challenges included:
    a dominated, armored knight encased in a giant ball of ice, the ring out of the room was around his neck.
    a fire giant covered with the glamour of a troll
    a form of prismatic wall that reformed after being triggered
    a moving floor of writhing black snakes - transformed black puddings
    a group of wyverns disguised as a single massive dragon
    a lava-filled corridor concealing a massive lava elemental
    a pair of young green dragons protected by a force cage

The group did make it through the challenges, and made it to the winner's circle. There, the scrying ended, and the Lich, Kas, stepped in to finish off the group along with a pair of fire giant guards. He was not about to allow them to walk away. The group proved even tougher than Kas expected, and he was forced to retreat. As the group pursued through the casino, searching for Kas, they laid waste. The casino burned to the ground, and the patrons scattered. Yet, Kas eluded capture. Hornig, desperate to track Kas, turned to the patrons of the casino. He offered his Ring of Spell Turning to anyone who would give up the location of Kas's bolt hole.

DeathStorm XXIX

With Kas injured, and on the run, the group worked quickly to learn the whereabouts of Kas’s hideout. Hornig found a Beholder willing to talk, and with the bribe of a Ring of Spell Turning learned much. The Beholder’s name is T-T-Telen

Kas has made a pact with a tribe of Beholders. This pact was made while T-T-Telen was not present, and he’s resented it ever since. He doesn’t feel that his clan is making gains that are worth the risk. He is willing to help the party, on 2 conditions:

1 – no killing of Beholders. He can get them into the Beholder home, but if his kin start dying, he’ll sound the alarm himself.
2- Don’t let his kin or Kas know that he helped them, or he’ll be banished forever.

The party needs his help because:
    Ground entry is so protected that it’s unlikely any can enter that way.
    Only entry through the roof is possible, it’s under protected due to the magical sensors. 
    Any magical transit approach will be detected at 30’ and alarms triggered. (fly, levitate, etc.)
    T-T-Telen can run a rope from their spire to a neighboring tower. Beholder levitation doesn’t trigger the alarms.

Fighting Beholders is tough enough. Doing it without killing them... that's a challenge. The party avoided killing any Beholders until they found the entrance to Kas's underground lair, which the Beholders couldn't enter. Then the gloves came off. Ozzle, in a foggy room, managed to Sneak Attack a Beholder, against all odds. The injured Beholder died quickly, and fell upon poor Ozzle. Who proceed to wave the Beholders eyes around and make spooky Beholder sounds. Very disturbing.

Kas had a custodian Troll who triggered traps and dished out some damage. Traps included Permanent Prismatic walls, and numerous Runes. Invisible Zombie Fire Giants were needed to open a secret door, and a room of armor on pedestals provided loads of comic relief.

Finally, Kas was cornered in his lair. Kas tossed a bundle through a portal before attempting to thrash the party. A chasm slowed the party down slightly (though enemy fungus, plant growth, and charm plant helped here), and magic flew in every direction. A Wall of Stone prevented Kas from jumping through the portal himself. With most of the party down or dead, and his own survival looking grim, Zenier at last struck Kas with a Smite Evil and Kas was defeated.

DeathStorm XXX

Research into Liches has revealed the following information:

The Lich’s Phylactery

An integral part of becoming a lich is creating a magic phylactery in which the character stores its life force. As a rule, the only way to get rid of a lich for sure is to destroy its phylactery. Unless its phylactery is located and destroyed, a lich reappears 1d10 days after its apparent death. 

The party has made an educated guess as to what was in that bundle thrown through the portal.

Armed and ready, the party stepped through the portal, in pursuit of Kass's phylactery. The portal turned out to be a vortex tunnel, leading between prime material planes. Mid-journey, a Slaad fortress was positioned to capture unwary travellers. A magical net grabbed the group, and dropped them into a pocket dimension around the fortress. Outside the cell, a group of Slaad controlled the chamber. When these chaotic creatures detected 'Law' in the party, a button was pushed and a trapdoor opened up beneath the party, dropping them through an anti-magic sphere into a lower chamber with a rather hungry Rancor. Fighting one of these without the aid of magic proved difficult, but it was eventually killed. The party found that the anti-magic didn't completely fill the chamber when a pair of elementals (air & water) moved into the room and began to clean up the mess. The elementals shuttled the gore through a small opening and out of the chamber. Ozzle checked out where the secret exit led, and the party learned the basic structure of the fortress and its pocket-dimension nature. The group decided to work their way back up into the fortress and search for the phylactery, or at least find out from the Slaad where it may be. They fought a number of Slaad (Green & Blue) and found out from Imp servants that the phylactery had not been recovered, but may have triggered a 'false alarm' some days ago but passed through the capture net. The party also learned that the mechanism for operating the trap was too complex for them to master, so they had to capture a properly trained Green Slaad to help them. Through magic and threats this was done, and the group continued on their way.

As the party approached the target material plain, they felt a strong pull on their minds. Half of the party found their minds pulled from their bodies, and regained consciousness inside the bodies of dragons! Those that maintained their own bodies found themselves scattered across the countryside. The party's first priority was getting back together. Ozzle's first thought was to terrorize the nearest village. Imagine his surprise when the locals smiled and waved up at him. This world was quiet, safe, and in harmony with the few remaining dragons. These dragons did not eat much, didn't covet treasure, and in general lived peacefully with the people of the land. Evil creatures had been wiped out, and life was good.

Except of course, for that Dragon that had gone bad decades ago, turned into a Draco Lich, and wiped out all of the stronger Dragons and powerful Heroes who had made the world a safe place. Fortunately, in their dying moments, the heroes had defeated the Draco-lich when the world's most powerful wizard, Tenidar, brought amazing magical energies into play and stripped the Draco Lich's mind from its body, leaving the body a lifeless husk in the bottom of an extremely deep chasm.

Enter - Kaas. Stripped from his phylactery, his mind found the empty husk of the Draco Lich. This in a world with no heroes, and no major powers in place to stop him. He started slowly, destroying anything he saw as a threat, including the few dragons in the area. He also destroyed entire villages just to collect material components for his spells. Obviously, once this was all learned, the party moved in to stop him. With half the party in humanoid form, and the other half in dragon form (from the small Marcus dragon to the huge Ozzle dragon) the party attacked. Prismatic Spray evened the odds quickly, and the Red-Dragon-Lich body was immune to fire, cold, and lightning. Fortunately, Ozzle was an acid-spitting dragon, as were two others, and this helped turn the tide.

DeathStorm XXXI

Kaas was destroyed, and the displaced dragons took their bodies back (after WALKING across the countryside, darn it). The Slaad were still in their pocket dimension fortress capturing travellers, stealing or perhaps killing on a regular basis. The group geared up once more, and stepped through the portal. This time ready to destroy the Slaads and take down their fortress permanently. Some were more prepared than others. The group remembered that the floor was likely to fall out beneath them, but not everyone really prepared for it. Some had grapple hooks to toss at the bars (though there was no door to open even if this succeeded), some had a fly spell up, some had a levitate, some counted on beating the Slaad to the punch and D-Dooring before the Slaad could punch the button. Getting out of the cell took a LOT longer than it should have. Eventually, the party defeated the Slaad at the cell (more than last time, security had been increased) and moved up into the fortress. The number of guards at the guard station had also been increased, and the codes to the doors had been changed. The Blue Slaad again proved to be powerful combattants, but as the party learned the Slaad tactics their combats got easier. The guest chamber was occupied by a small group of Vampires traveling the planes. These Vampires were trained Monks, providing a difficult obstacle. With the ability to stun an opponent, then bite their throats (doing Con damage) they went through a number of weaker party members, including Andir Zith & Ozzle. As Raise Dead takes too long, Reincarnates were used instead. Andir Zith is now on his 4th (?) body, and Ozzle is now a Gnome!

The group finished off every Blue & Green Slaad encountered, and finally found the Grey Slaad leader with his bodyguards. His ability to shrug off the party's magic, summon another Slaad, and launch offensive spells at will tore into the party, but he was simply too outnumbered to hold them off forever (as a note, the playtesters had 5 characters for the first half of the game, 6 for the second half, both games at GENCON had 9 players... very full games this year, YEAH!).

DeathStorm XXXII

Nikro was charmed by a visiting Vampire at the Astral fortress. While the party rested, Nikro slipped off to meet the Vampire, and they slipped off through one of the portals. The party managed to figure out which portal was used, and followed, hoping to rescue Nikro. Upon arrival, the group was attacked by a few Vampires, and met Sandy. The local Vampire Slayer. The group escaped the Vampire's mansion, in order to regroup, and gather intelligence about the town of Cleardale. It turned out that Sandy's friend, Holly, a power witch, was an unwilling servant of the Vampire. The group set out to battle The Duke (the Vampire Lord who'd defeated Sandy numerous times and killed her sister and friends) and eventually rescued Nikro and Holly.

DeathStorm XXXIII

An earlier failure of Sandy and her friends was the ascension of Cleardale's mayor. Now known as, 'The Beast', this creature was responsible for the demonic takeover of Cleardale. While most demons enjoyed ruling this area of the Prime Material Plane, some wanted to go home, and offered the party help in their mission. The group battled 'The Beast's' minions to gain access to the tunnels below the destroyed school, and finally reached the humongous creature. A great worm whose body bulged with absorbed humans and demons, arms and faces reaching out to grab any creature approaching too close. With 'The Beast' destroyed, hundreds of summoned demons were banished back to their home planes.

Various tragedies included: Ozzle and Nikro both dying. Both, however, got lucky, and reincarnated back into thier original races! Hornig had his brain sucked out of his skull by an Illithid-like Demon. He's not been quite right since. Jessy was disintegrated by Dunham, but I think we'll ignore that thread just because I don't want to replace the character. If someone could remind me how that happened, I'd appreciate it. 

DeathStorm XXXIV

Hail the King?

Done with Cleardale, the group returns home to their Astral Fortress. There are 3 unexplored gates from the fortress, any of which could bring unwanted visitors. Knowing your neighbors can be useful.

The king of the land, King Gonyer, has put in place magics which prevent planar travel, including things such as 'Blink', 'D-Door', and 'Teleport'. This includes the portal in which the party arives. The group is offered a quest; "The Search For The Challices!". An on-going quest that has been attempted many times over three decades. The local nobles wager on the outcome, and offer words of encouragement from safely behind the king's castle wall. Eventually, the group finds the challices, in a seemingly under-guarded Temple of Titania. An adventure that any powerful group could have accomplished. The land seems bereft of worthy heroes. Upon returning to King Gonyer, and returning the chalices, our two parties had distinctly different approaches.

Group 2: spied on King Gonyer, and found his wife and guards were devils in disguise, and King Gonyer was something other than he appeared. When confronted, the king admitted that the castle was under a curse, and the chalices were a way of removing the evil magics. When given the goblets, he placed them to his forehead, where they grew into great curved horns and he was returned to his proper form: Geryon, Lod of the 7th Plane of Hell. He then admitted his disdain for the local nobles, and destroyed them in front of the party. The party offered to take their payment and leave, telling Geryon that what he did to his kingdom after they left was none of their business. After the group allowed Geryon to 'buff up', he destroyed half of them in a grand battle, and chased the others out of his castle.

Group 1: this group also easily recovered the chalices, and returned to King Gonyer's castle. When Gonyer turned into Geryon, the group immediately attacked. Geryon's 'Fear' aura caused trouble and scattered some of the party, but the party's magic overcame the fear and kept the party together to fight. The daughters were brought into the fight, but were quickly killed. Queen Erin (she and her daughter were all Erinyes) was furious, and launched to her daughters' aide. When brought down by a 'Hold Monster', the party party was able to focus on Geryon. Ozzle proved one of the most effective fighters in the combat, as his maneuvers allowed Sneak Attacks almost every round. Galbrith was dropped a number of times by Geryon, but kept coming back after cures were tossed his way. Finally, with HP that could be counted on one hand, he staggered back to the Queen, and delivered the most arrogant, and socially irreverent coup-de-grace ever seen, slowly 'stirring the pot'. His taunting brought Geryon's rage to a boil, upon where he launched himself away from his existing fight and down upon Galbrith, flattening him into a greasy smear. Geryon grabbed his dead wife, and teleported - taking him away from the fight, but only to the top of the castle due to the 'transportation trap'. Ozzle immediately followed, and got in one final shot as Geryon flew away, litteraly 'with his tail between his legs', as that's where Ozzle kept stabbing him.

Next year we will continue the story-line from Group 1. Geryon is pissed! And he's out for revenge. Meanwhile, the party must find their way off of this plane.

To those who played this year, THANK YOU! Both groups played beautifully, and I've rarely had more fun running Death Storm. I hope to see every one of you next year. And if you can't fit Death Storm into your schedule next year, at least stop by and say "Hi".

DeathStorm XXXV

Find the King

The background: The group has explored one of the 3 remaining portals connected to their Astral fortress. They found this realm to be under the control of an evil king, who was actually an Arch-Devil, Lord Geryon, trapped in the form of a human for nearly 50 years. During his reign, Lord Geryon used his powers to bring in devil soldiers and a bride. He sired three children, and acquired four crowns which hid the wearers’ natures from all magical detection. He gave his soldiers the ability to polymorph, and protected the region from transportation magic, causing all creatures attempting these spells to be teleported to the castle. This region extends for 20 miles in all directions. 

Accomplished by the Party

The group was tricked into helping Lord Geryon return to his true form and regaining all of his powers. The bride and children were killed, and the Arch-Devil was literally chased off with his tail between his legs. The skulls of the bride and children have been mounted on spikes outside the castle since the battle. 

The politics were thrown into disarray, and only the power of the party prevented civil war. Over the years, Lord Geryon destroyed any heroes who developed too much of a reputation by sending them on the quest that would remove his curse; the same quest that the party eventually accomplished. King Seural now sits upon the thrown, and while not a friend of the party, he trusts them, and he knows that only their power put him in the throne without further bloodshed.

The party has found that they could return home by travelling far from the castle and plane-shifting, however they have sworn to track down Lord Geryon and destroy him, as his revenge upon the land is certain if they leave. They have spent the last 7 months searching, and using all of the spells at their command, however Lord Geryon still has one of the Crowns of Non-Detection and the search has not been successful.

DeathStorm XXXVI

The group explored one of the 2 remaining portals connected to their Astral fortress. They found this realm to be under water. A sprawling city of glass gave a beautiful view of the ocean bottom, with abundant sea life swimming nearby. 

The first problem encounted was the fact that the gate was underwater. The second problem was that the world's lay-lines were weak. Arcane spells above 3rd level work in only half the complex. Arcane spells above 5th level work only in rare locations. Divine spells don’t use the lay-lines directly, but the realm’s weak magic does hamper them. The gods can ‘push through’, but it took effort for priests to cast divine spells.

With the gate under water, there is a 1-way Wall of Force blocking it. This prevents the water from pouring through. The lay-lines are weak here, so ‘Disintegrate’ won’t work. The party was trapped until they found the exit portal.

The majority of the complex has air and is constructed of glass, as strong as steel. 

The party discovered machines which dispensed elixers which gave the imbiber permanent powers. The dispensers required gems, so purchases were limited. There were also creatures, perhaps once human, who had mutated so far as to be almost unrecognizable. The party found their way back to the Astral base, but plan to return with more gems in hand.

DeathStorm XXXVII

The group sold off every excess magic item in their possession, and profited as much as possible from the sale of scrolls back on their own home plane. Gems in hand, they returned to the underwater realm to get more elixers. The transit system in the city had only a few locations when they first arrived. However, the discovery of a security station gained the group access to more parts of the city. Those that they'd previously explored were cleared out of treasures. The party traveled to other sections of the city and found a number of marvelous Elixers. After defeating a number of Big Daddies and a Big Sister, the group found the creator of the city, Andrew Ryan. Since Ryan could not cleanse the city of the party, he started to destroy it section by section. The group attempted to stop him, but found that his Repulsion spell and Summoned creatures were too difficult to overcome. The group failed to stop Ryan, and barely Plane Shifted away before the city was destroyed with the release of underwater volcanic vents. Sandy's body was never recovered, and Ryan is presumed dead.

DeathStorm XXXVIII

The group of heroes stepped through the last unexplored passage from their astral fortress. While the smoothest journey of all of the passages, it was also the longest. They found themselves in a vault, containing many magical and non-magical treasures. While they had to fight the clay golem released from stasis, and their own reflections from the mirror, they found a few valuable treasures as well. Unfortunately, they also unrolled the carpet of transportation which allowed K'Teer guards to teleport directly into the vault. It turned out that the party had landed in the vault of a Spell Jamming ship. When the K'Teer didn't return, shuttles were launched from the mothership to investigate. The party managed to fend off the boarders (launching a flitter directly into the open boarding shuttle helped) but the pilot of their ship headed toward the mothership to find reinforcements. The party managed to board the mothership, and worked their way below decks. They found their way to the throne room the beautiful L'Tor, Atlacoya, who waited for them with guards at the ready. Nikro insulted the self-proclaimed goddess, so the assault began. Galbrith's Berserk spell send Zenier, Nikro, and Galbrith into a fighting frenzy. Dunham was dropped quickly, and Jessy Nor was Feebleminded. With Galbrith berserk, Dunham and Jessy Nor never had a chance to get back into the fight. Once Nikro and Galbrith were down, Zenier was alone against Atlacoya and her First Prime.
While Zenier couldn't understand the exchange between Atlacoya and her First Prime, it appeared that the First Prime intended to prove himself, and Atlacoya sat back and allowed him to win or lose on his own. Zenier took out the First Prime, and charged Atlacoya complete with Smite Evil. He dealt great damage to the empty throne, driving Elite through the Projected Image. Atlacoya walked out with small applause, and smiled at Zenier's win. Zenier jumped down from the raised platform, driving his sword through her, and then, from the ground, watched the wound completely heal. She pressed her palm to his head, driving an item's Dominate Monster through Zenier's defenses and pulling him up to his feet, her slave. Zenier, however, heroically fought against the spell, and pushed it back out, striking at Atlacoya again and again. She attempted to Dominate him one more time, but at first couldn't get through his spell resistance, even when her heroic effort gave her a second chance.
The wounds Zenier inflicted continued to heal immediately, until finally a painting of Atlacoya burst into flame with a cry of anguish and pain. Atlacoya attempted to defend herself with Stone Skin, but Elite, Zenier's Holy Avenger cut right through it. With her painting exhausted, and her Stone Skin useless, Atlacoya resorted to Improved Invisibility and Magic Missiles to take Zenier down. His potions and spell resistance kept him going for a while, and his random running around the room with Dispel Magic did take down a number of her defenses. However, luck was not with him, for his last conscious sensation was a gentle hand carressing his chin and saying "good-night my fine warrior." (though he couldn't understand the words) A Vampiric Touch spell dropped him at the end.

DeathStorm XXXIX

So, what now? Dunham, Galbrith, Jessy Nor, Nikro, and Zenier are gone. The 5 survivors back on the astral base don't hear back from their friends. They cast Sending spells over the next few weeks, and finally get responses. What are the responses, and what do they do in response to them?

The remaining heroes, along with some hired help, went through the portal after thier feinds. They found a message in blood left by Nikro, indicating that at least 3 had survived. After fighting K'Teer throughout a Pyramid Spell Jammer, and finally finding Atlacoya, they found Jessy Nor as one of her thralls. After a long battle with Atlacoya, her thralls, and The First Prime of Atlacoya, they finally defeated her, only to find that inside the armor of the First Prime was the body of Zenier. Limbs were lost, characters died, and two friends were rescued (Jessy survived the assault).

But they're not done. The fleet is aware of the death of their goddess, and they're moving in. The pilot of the spell-jamming ship has aimed it towards the planet below, and there's not enough time for someone else to take control of the Greater Helm (it takes minutes to take control, and the ground is getting closer much too quickly).

The group could dive through their portal home, but the collision is sure to destroy it leaving their missing friends trapped here forever.

The group could take the rings down to the planet to escape the crash, and later find their friends, but then the group is trapped here when the collision destroys the portal.

The groups decides to take a chance: they move the portal to a ring chamber, with as much loot as they can grab. They split the party and some go to each ring chamber, transporting down to the surface of the planet.. The K'Teer are still here from the earlier encounter, and the party is in no shape to fight them. With Invisibilities, D-Doors, Fly spells, and every other trick they have left, they escape the area, but without most of their hard-earned loot, and without the Portal. There's a chase, but they manage to escape, at least temporarily.

They have some bodies, some personal possessions, and little time. Jessy has his spell-books back, and Zenier has his armor and sword. Three party members are missing, and are believed to be 'in the mines'. The group needs to find the mines, find their friends, and get to the Portal before the enemy has a chance to get it off planet.

Death Storm XL takes place only 24 hours after XXXIX.

This should be fun.

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