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Author Topic: Whisperwhip: a megabeast steakhouse (Circus Edition)  (Read 79744 times)

Taupe

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Re: Whisperwhip: Syndrome testing facility
« Reply #165 on: June 18, 2015, 12:18:52 pm »

Because the backlog of screenshots I've amassed is ridiculous in size, I really need to write this down sooner than later, before I actually forget what most of this revolves around. More often than not already, I'm writing these updates looking at a bunch of images and thinking ''What's this related to again?''. The solution is, of course, smaller chapters posted more regularly. The bigger ones we are used to take a LARGE amount of time, and most often than not I don't have the energy nor time to write one down unless i have a day off. This new format is easier to manage, and I can post something after I get back from work. There should be more tonight, tomorrow, and Saturday night if everything goes as planned, which should cover a good chunk of the story.

Taupe

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Re: Whisperwhip: Syndrome testing facility
« Reply #166 on: June 19, 2015, 06:41:45 pm »

CHAPTER 72: Between a rock and a hard place
Year 134

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Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Well, this is awkward. A gigantic deadly serpent from hell has crossed the bridge seconds before it was retracted. Out of sheer luck, it stopped to destroy a ballista, giving us just enough time to lock the doors and seal the entrance. That means the monster is right on our doorstep, and facing it will kill our soldiers if we win, and kill everyone if they lose.

This will be a fucking mess, but that bitch is going down regardless. Mark my words, I don't care how much of this fucking fortress I have to drop on its head to achieve it.

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Meanwhile, the mayor is getting attacked by rutherers while setting traps to avoid being attacked by rutherers. She manages to run away, tho. One layer of caverns above, the newest megabeast is apparently stuck in a fungi mess, preventing it from joining forces with the scary serpent. Both creatures are now trapped, but this one can honestly wait there if you ask me.

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While some random peasants are getting murdered down below by smaller monsters, I spend some time designing a good plan for the megabeast. I know I want to crumble part of the fortress as a trap, but too small a cave-in could miss the target, and too large would be a certain kill, but create a giant fucking mess. My main problem, is that crumbling what's above the corridor leading to the bridge would collapse that room as well, creating a gigantic hole here we currently have a defensible entrance. We probably want to avoid

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Some time ago, for no good reason whatsoever, I ordered a new room carved next to the bridge, which is used to store wood in a very inefficient place. This room will come into play soon enough, as we are going to use it as a deathroom. A layer above, a similar room is carved. Two levels above, a slightly larger room is created. It will be linked to a support, which will be controlled by levers. Once the serpent slides too far into the wood storage, it will die.

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Hey, look, a crundle bone craft! I'm glad to know that I'm backed  in these times of trouble by an ever-expanding team of legendary bonecarvers. What a useful skill.

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Everyone, deploy your bonecarving abilities!!

*nothing happens*

...Guess we'll need to deal with this new forgotten beast in a different way then. As always, a generous amount of weapon slices seems to be the solution.

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Soon enough, the trap is ready to be sprung, if you discard the part where we carved and engraved the bottom floor then miscalculated and channelled through like 30 masterpieces.

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Seconds before we manage to pull the lever, the forgotten beast moves away. The pull lever order is cancelled just in time.

Now we wait, and wait and wait. Sooner or later, he'll be back. The snake spends about 2 months exploring the very amazing little corridor to the south, all seven meters of it. finally, he returns.

-Knock knock.
-Who's there?

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''The ceiling!''

Also, there is a*lot*of blood in that snake, man.

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The wood storage doesn't just fill with debris, it absolutely gives up and explodes. everything crumbles and falls two layers below, very close to the (still not fully sealed) magma shaft. The engravers inform me that some masterpieces have been defaced. Yeah, so was this snake.

Another forgotten beast or another has come (screenshot broken)
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We go outside to solve the problem, and a flying monster bypasses the bridge and charges at us. thankfully it is killed seconds before it could enter the base. that's right, the instant we removed the blocks sealing the entrance, a monster appeared and ran straight through. That means we gotta repair the trap, and repair it fast.

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Some work on re-adding a flooring to the snake trap, while others fuck around with our cavern flooring to create a small death-room. By putting some statues in there spread sufficiently, we'll hopefully keep the next forgotten beast inside long enough to pull the lever.

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Just in case, we're adding two redundant levers. One in the arena corridor, a well travelled area. Another goes in BASE1, where many people now spend their time. Whichever of these three levers people get to first will seal the deal. The snake-eater can wait for it's prey to wander inside, once we use the bridge to lock creatures nearby. The statue room, tho, only has a short window of opportunity. Time is of the essence.

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The masons get to work. Each stone excavated is turned into blocks to create a new flooring. One trap is emptied, the other filled.

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Suddenly, we hear weird noises from the surface, and a commotion amidst the dwarves. A bronze collossus has come, bent on mayhem and destruction. Because the leaders of the lavender Empire have the best timings possible, the new law-giver shows up a few feet next of the metallic giant.

''Hey, guys, we have a lot to talk about!''

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And of course, while the soldiers run outside to meet the foe in battle, a couple of ambushes happen. About 2 dozen goblins are now sneaking alongside the western wall. Of course the human diplomat is oblivious to the clusterfuck he just entered. He just want to chat with the mayor.

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So here's the deal. People are fighting the collosus, and basically every attack results in a slight chip at best. The monster in return is kicking people left and right, laughing. In the background, the goblins are sneaking on us and shooting openly at the war animals, killing various lions and dogs because they are opportunistic bastards.

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The colossus is full of bruises and cuts, but being made of bronze, it hardly gives any fucks. This turns out to be a long battle. but seriously this is chapter 72, you know how that fucking ends. he dies.

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In time, each of the limbs of Spospo are separated from his body, and he just lies there, headbutting people, claiming it's merely a flesh wound.

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And of course, he finally falls for good, leaving behind a statue of a...

What.

Guys, this makes no sence. The colossus left behind a statue of a hill titan. That's like the scoobigang unmasking a guy in a ghost costume and revealing a fucking velociraptor.

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And in the background, the goblins left a pile of dead pets. Then a pile of dead goblins.

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It's obvious that dumping piles of corpse outside is becoming dangerous for everyone, so instead i decide to move some to the courtyard. We have no more birds there anyway. That's when I remember my friend the hippo. Boy, oh boy have you been eating a lot. what are you made of, a fucking giraffe? I say goodbye to my hippo, for he will soon be leaving us.

''I'm sorry, big guy, but you ate everything.''

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It's better that way, i tell myself. better he be slaughtered, than just die of hunger in a few weeks. Within a few days, mister Hippo is butchered, and the courtyard is converted into a corpse stockpile.

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I lost a hippo, but apparently I'm the only one in the noble area to complain. Tun is super thrilled about this week's three new querns, while someone made a really great statue of SkaiaMechanic now that she's our hammerer. Not that she's actually hammered anything yet. Can't we get a hippo statue instead?

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Hey, you know what this fortress really needs right now? More forgotten beast breathing deadly dust! Who doesn't love deadly dust? Nobody that's who!

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It runs to the statue room. It doesn't take Kor more than a few seconds to carelessly topple every single statue and move out. There's nowhere near enough time to activate the trap. Instead we lock the bridge and seal the door. The statue room is ready to use because it was never activated, but the snake-eater is still unrepaired.

Now, here's what happens next. Once the statues are wrecked, and the bridge is raised, Kor rushes away and disappears in the caverns. He seems to be very, very far away. My smart idea, obviously, is to re-open the bridge, replace the statues and run back inside. I'm very oblivious to the forgotten beast's ability to sence and dash toward targets. As soon as the first worker has reached a statue, Kor is upon him. Quickly, we dispatch the army, because there's no time to re-raise the bridge and avoid a disaster. Oups.

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The deadly explosion kocks everyone down two floors below. One dwarf manages to recover quickly enough to hack at Kor's many legs and bring it down. Cue a new, terrible syndrome.

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Everyone involved in the fight ends up dizzy, and nauseous. As a team, they work together to repaint the hospital green. As with any kind of deadly dust, inly time and the will of the gods will tell whether they will live, or die in a horrible fashion...
« Last Edit: August 04, 2015, 06:31:25 pm by Taupe »
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Taupe

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Re: Whisperwhip: Syndrome testing facility
« Reply #167 on: June 21, 2015, 12:05:32 am »

CHAPTER 73: Rovod, greatest champion
Year 134

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While the life of the soldiers lies in the balance, a dwarf has been overtaken by unknown forces, and he's claimed a workshop, alongside one of our exactly two adamantine wafers. Buddy, it took about a century to extract that strand and turn it into a bar, if you don't produce something that's worth a kingdom and gives free blowjobs, I will have you executed.

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While we wait for this new artefact, the engineers are adding a bridge to the HAVEN entrance, which will seal the corridor in case of emergency.

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The doctors tell me that Bembul and the other fighters will live, in the end. their health has greatly improved, leaving behind no real permanent issues. In the meantime, a farmer has strangely suffocated. he must have been the guy who tried to fix the statues...

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The artefact is complete. For a fucking kabok ring, it has two redeeming qualities. First, it is worth half a million dollar, so don't put it near a fucking fire please. second, it has some interesting artwork, including, and i shit you not, an image of itself, creating a fractal design of rings bearing images of rings bearing images of rings. Dwarven detailing sure is an advanced thing...

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Truth be told, this ring is essentially worth 5 percent of the fortress by itself. Not bad!

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And then another farmer dies of an infection. It seems the latest forgotten beast battle was alright for soldiers, but terrible for the civilians...

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To avoid further problems like we just faced, I've icnreased the number of statues in the trap, hopefully giving us more time to react next time. As an added bonus, I,m told that the newest batch of recruits, including ID the second, have now reached master fighter status.

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I order a few strands extracted. We have fully cleared the first layer of the spire, wielding about 20 raw pieces of adamantine. It will be a long time before this precious candy is ready to be used. It will take equally as long for our weapon and armorsmiths to be good enough to teach the stuff. regardless, the recent value of our kapok ring proved that having at least a bit of refined adamantine around is a good thing.

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One of the few veterans has died of thirst! I'm not sure how that's possible, until i look around. Nobody has seen this poor fellow, nor alath the new militia commander, since the forgotten beast attacked. We find Alath stranded one floor above the cavern bottom, just underneath the bridge. He is stuck there with the body of her friend, severely dehydrated and hungry. I cancel a few orders, and send the miners to dig her out!! She must have been knocked there by the deadly dust. It seems the attack was fatal for some soldiers, after all...

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Alath the Ks master is saved just in time. BASE1 is thankfully sotcked with food and drinks, saving the militia commander just in time... We'll need to cut a few spore trees to retrieve the fallen soldier's corpse, tho.

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Drama nonwithstanding, it is time to acquire more adamantine. I'm not exactly sure how to proceed, so I'll just channel around what we have now, and improvise.

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OMFG he is back! The dragon is back! Quick, everyone go and build ALL THE TRAPS

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The dragon moves north, and i send the mayor and her goons to trap the area where the dragon appeared. And then around it. Traps. Traps everywhere. It takes so long, why is the deepest cavern so fucking deep?

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Oh by Armok, those fucking elk birds are moving in and getting trapped. Don't waste the cages, you morons, they are meant for my cave dragon! Man I hate birds so much...

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More exciting things! Someone has claimed a magma forge, and an adamantine wafer! Could this be our first artefact-quality powerful weapon? We've had a bone dagger and a bone buckler in the past, but this is something else altogether. I swear, if this guy wastes the opportunity and makes an adamantine bracelet I will dismantle the forge and fit his flailing body into the magma myself.

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The metalsmith goes upstairs and grab the bones of a forgotten beast. Is he gonna fit all 140 bones into his creation? Forgotten beast skeletons are huuuge.

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And so are live forgotten beast. Hey, another monster, how joyful. Alath the KS master steals the kill and finishes off the beast.

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The dragon has left. Awww! Well, let's take this opportunity to create even more traps for the next visit, shall we? I want every single square inch covered in cages by the end of the year, people.

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Wow, emerlads, adamantine, forgotten beast bones AND forgotten beast leather? This is one seriously badass artefact we are withnessing in the making. I somewhat regret not weaving a strand into adamantine cloth, for this would have been the most badass thing possible. Instead, the metalsmith used normal cloth rolls.

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The metalsmith delivers! He created a truly astonishing item, a gigantic weapon rack, weaved from the skin and bones of forgotten beast, and held together by the mightiest of metal, adamantine, Let's not forget a few emeralds to top it off. Sure, the artwork on it is nothing exceptional, but we have a giant replica of a megabeast made of awesome, that's meant to hold our armor suits. The metalsmith has also reached legendary status in his craft, because of fucking course look at this thing. Wow, man.

He called the thing ''the windy Crescent'' which somewhat makes sence considering we live in the Windy Realm...

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Such a creation belongs in the middle of the staircase formation leading to the crypt of our soldiers, next to the temple to Kadol. Everyone should get a good glimpse of it when heading toward the mines or forges too... Our wealth has skyrocketed by over 3 millions in the latest season, thanks to two artefacts containing adamantine...

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We now have two legendary blacksmiths, but nobody decent with weapon or armosmithing. I order a few peasants to try their hands at a few copper items, just so they can get inspired by a possible mood.

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That being said, we may be filthy rich now but the number of dwarves has declined significantly over the last year or two. Aka, we lost almost half the fort, going from 180 to 106. Because pointless deaths are no longer something we can afford, I decide that this spring we're going to play it safe. I want more wood to keep up steel production, which means charcoal, which means trees. We'll chop down a few easy trees outside, and have the new recruits standing watch over the workers. some people will also be allowed to gather cloths under the supervision of the army. We are sending scared civilians to gather dusty and bloodied rags from a pile of corpses while sneaking in a few logs, hoping no goblins how up. It's just like in the old days!

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you don't notice how incredibly good our military program is until you realise that the new weapon masters like ID the Second are no older than thirteen. Heck, at their age the only thing I was mastering was my own dick.

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The candy excavation must continue. After a few layers, it become incredibly impractical to simply channel twn kilometers around every part of the vein. instead we create a master staircase that will lead to each level of the operation. In time, I may have plans to seal off the entire thing from the rest of the caverns, but our declining workforce prevents such a daring project at the time being.

If only we could get migrants...

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I'm not sure why nobody will move here anymore. we have the wealth, we have legends about how we once had a great army, and we have an inner courtyard that's essentially a barren, ashen prison filled with desolation and corpse piles. How could people not want to live here?

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Oh yeah speaking of strange things. Let's take a moment to look over our champion's family. He's been in a coma for almost a decade now, yet apparently his wife recently had a new baby. Let that sink in. the guy is in a coma, and totally rotten inside out, covered in blisters and most of his organs are failing. He can't feed himself or drink on his own. His right arm has been hacked away. Yet, somehow, his wife decided to look past that and get it going. I'm guessing my thirteen years old self isn't the only thing that's mastered his penis, because even in this condition good old Rovod is still able to get an erection.

Also the couple named both their eldest son and daughter Stukos.

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Oh, and speaking of disturbing things, apparently a child has risen from the grave, and we can't get sight of him. we just know he's around because we keep finding the livid, terrified corpses of war lions around the mines. They are literally dying of fear.

I decide to write another letter to the colonies, explaining how sanitary, family-friendly and safe for children this fortress has become...
« Last Edit: August 04, 2015, 06:31:35 pm by Taupe »
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Taupe

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Re: Whisperwhip: Syndrome testing facility
« Reply #168 on: June 23, 2015, 01:18:33 pm »

CHAPTER 74: A machine for skypigs
Year 135

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Some issues must be sorted out. We have ghosts and tantruming dwarves, so some slab engraving is in order. There is also some visits to HAVEN planned for our most shocked coworkers.

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With those immediate problems under control, I direct our workforce on setting more cage traps, and finishing the repairs on the snake-eater. What concerns me, tho, is the lack of efficiency found with the second trap we made, the statue one. Clearly a better bait is in order, and I know just the thing.

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Animals. For now we have many of them, especially useless species like dingos, so I get a few of them butchered to reduce their numbers. I've also been told that one specific animal we have is not, in fact, a grazer.

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I'm talking about pigs, of course. the boar and sow population has skyrocketed since theyr were left outside at the mercy of any invader, meaning they were safer than inside with the deadly plagues. I get the wall temporarily unsealed, and we move the pigs inside. with the farmlands deconstructed, we have some free room to house the beasts.

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Given the greatest disaster to ever strike this fortress, it makes plenty of sense that the animal to attract monsters to their cavein-induced destruction would be a pig. The little piggies are stashed in the statue room, alongside a lion, because I want something that'll fight a bit longer if we need to delay the beast. Somehow i doubt the pigs will give the greatest of fights.

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Not all animals are as tame as pigs, tho. Down in the lower caverns, a mechanic was struck down by a mighty rutherer while setting up cage traps.

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his sacrifice was not in vain, tho. Two of the pack's members have fallen into our traps, and they now rest in a cage, ours to tame or eat.

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A third rutherer joins them soon enough, attracted by haulers trying to grab the mechanic's corpse.

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Meanwhile, the goblins are ambushing more workers outside. The soldiers join the fight and avenge the poor lads, but that's not gonna bring the dead back.

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At least the new cage traps at the entrance are doing a good job of stopping intruding thieves... the cheetahs are apparently being outrun, which I find it hard to believe.

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It would seem that the rutherer who killed one of our own has been afflicted with a strange sort of plague in the process. Let me rephrase this: The dwarves of Whisperwhip are now the carriers of various deadly syndromes. Those who remain in the fortress have apparently developed an immunity to them, but anything that attacks them becomes infected. we have evolved natural defenses against predator in the form of being horribly cursed by shadowy forces.

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In total, five rutherers are now safely caged, waiting for their training. If history and making that exact mistake a dozen times before have taught me anything, it's that itll take a while and many generations before this new breed of pets are ready to leave their cage. In the middle of a crisys, a few rutherers reverting to a wild state could be fatal.

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I'm told that a few more ghosts have been put to rest. Also of note, the strand extractors are slowly mastering their trade, and we have adamantine available to us once more.

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Uninspired by such expensive metals, a local dwarf has created a new artefact, a piece of jewelry upon which he recreated a picture of a kapok ring, upon which is represented that same kapok ring. Guys, your fractal jewellery is starting to tear appart the laws of optics.

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I'm discussing the recent news with a trader from the lavender empire, when suddenly he turns into a fucking giant deadly antelope. A human trader just became a wereantellope. Why is every fort I play turning into fucking Doomforests?

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Attracted by the smell of food coming from below, the monster rushes toward the staircase and heads for the kitchens. He stops on the way to eat one of our dogs. A war cheetah tries to stop it, but the werebeast will have none of it. The cheetah's intervention only makes it more enraged!

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That's when a cook comes out of nowhere, asking what's going on. when he sees the kitchen being disturbed, his immediate reaction is to... punch the monster. yup. he then produce a pickaxe out of fucking nowhere and hamstring the antelope. Then he uses the pick to rip both arms from the beast, before resuming his cooking.

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Zublar, our only surviving axe lord, comes in at this moment and takes care of the creature. ''Get him out of here, he's putting blood everywhere'' says the cook casually, a bloody pick in one hand, and a spoon full of soup in the other.

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Because it is now monday, a new forgotten beast shows up in the caverns like clockwork. This one cannot get anywhere because of mushrooms, it seems.

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The second layer of caverns are still filled with mystery to our cartographers. We can't be sure if the beast is stuck or not unless we discover what lies in the north of this area. I send a few woodcutters to do some scouting, revealing the beast is indeed stuck.

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Despite all these monsters and deaths, it seems our important production is going smoothly. People are keeping up with drinks and pots, as well as producing steel. I've switched to glass pots now, since we use al the wood for charcoal.

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Steel production also means we need marble, so the miners spend most of their time here grabbing more flux stone.

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Here's a quick look at what our population is up to. We currently have no iddlers. most of the tasks are actually moving stuff and dumping extra items, not much is being done appart from core tasks.

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One problem we face now, is that metal bars are accumulating in the forges. We need more space to store them, and I've used most of the space around BASE1. The solution, temporarily at least, is to add a new storage right under the magma smelters.

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The bar/block stockpiles are also filled with stone blocks in BASE1. In an effort to save some space, I order this wall of sand replaced with actual rock. It'll look less dumb. Turns out the stone blocks are about to be used in bulk soon...

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A new forgotten beast has come! Armed with poisonous gas, it threatens the first layer of the caverns. Clearly such a danger is best dealt with using the machine for pigs. Here's the big problem, tho: pigs like to run away, and the forgotten beast likes to give chase. for a moment I fear this battle is a disaster, because the boars just scatter around the caverns while slowly bleeding. thankfully, the inclusion of a lion in the pen means one animal is staying there instead of running. the forgotten beast starts fighting the lion, and we find out it actually isnt all that tough. the lion is doing some good work by attacking relentlessly. I'm almost about to send the army and spare the trap, when i notice that adverse effects are showing up on the lion. clearly this gas shouldn't be touching important soldiers. Sorry, lion, you are taking one for the team.

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Wow. So much blood once more. Those traps are just so awesome, im sure Armok is applauding right now.

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Once the dust settles, I waste no time dispatching more lambs to the slaughter. Our masons are taken off hauling to repair the trap, which should free up some storage space in BASE1. No normal animals this time, only war creatures. Can't have forgotten beast chases all over the cavern when we are about to activate our traps.

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Of course this means we'll need to train all those dogs. We are certainly low on working dwarves at this point. When the beast approached the fortress, I made sure we had enough idlers to pull the levers. To get this result I cancelled every order from the manager menu, and then visited every single workshop in the fortress and personally cancelled every queued or repeating task there. the fortress is producing NOTHING and still right now I have no idlers, because everyone has stuff to haul or store. We have a fucking staff shortage is what we have.

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Oh, yeah, and someone anounces that the lion didnt make it. Spoiler alert. I guess...

I guess he had a lot of pressure resting on his shoulders...

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That being said, the trap is working perfectly, and we now have a way of dealing with some of the worst monster abilities, given that luck and good planning are on our side. Squiddwarf has been taking notes, and right now we have a forgotten beast kill count of 52. Wow. From now on, the opening chapter section will include a title, the year, AND the killcount.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2015, 06:31:45 pm by Taupe »
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Taupe

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Re: Whisperwhip: Syndrome testing facility
« Reply #169 on: June 25, 2015, 03:50:26 pm »

CHAPTER 75: Smoothbanners
End of year 135
Killcount: 52

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The goblin armies are upon us once more. Thankfully, the gates are sealed shut and we don't have to worry about it too much.

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Shortly after the lockdown, a giant tiger gives birth to cubs, hurray! We also manage to restock the statue trap with new war animals, freshly trained.

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Then, just as everything seems in order, I receive an anouncement... The duchess has been struck down by a troll. Wait what? Was she locked outside somehow? Apparently no, the culprit is a lone troll living in the caverns. He murdered Tun's wife and child, the bastard.

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Before we can avenge her, a new forgotten beast appears! It is a humanoid with wings, yet for the time being it seems unable to fly and reach us. Still, I order the caverns off-limit. Until we can see if this monster really flies or not, that is.

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As a result, the lion corpse crushed recently starts to decompose. With both caverns and outside unsafe and forbidden, a smith has found some free time to work on a personal project. he claims it will ''Help with the situation'' before retreating to a magma forge.

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Before I can ask any details, I'm interrupted by another forgotten beast anouncement. Not sure where this one is exactly...

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People don't even care to look where the monster came from. Everyone is too excited to check the forges. apparently the artefact is complete, and it's an adamantine Battle Axe! While the details of the artwork are not that impressive, they do show what the intended purpose of the axe is. A legging image and a shield image, that certainly means protecting Whisperwhip from attacks. This battle axe is probably the greatest achievement of our civilisation, and as such i price this priceless item at a whooping 1,6 million bucks. Not that anything in the world exists to compare it to really.

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Zuglar is our only axedwarf, and he has fought in countless battles against megabeasts, monsters and goblins alike. The honor to wield Smoothbanners the Patterned Dish will be his!

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This is a great moment for the Wilted Sack and its members, so I decide rotting cheetahs arent an appropriate decoration. Instead I order improvements made to the royal level.

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Outside in the courtyard, the ashes have given way to some new grass. For a brief moment, before this grass dies of heat and dries up, we have a pretty courtyard full of colors. Maybe nature itself is celebrating the creation of the greatest axe. What this means is, we also have a legendary weaponsmith now. In time, the creator will be able to work on high quality weapons made of adamantine, assuming we ever get more than a few wafers in our stocks.

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Another artefact we have is this unbreakable floor hatch made three decades ago. for a long time it has been decorating the bedroom of our militia commander, and linking it to a now unused barrack. I think it would be of better use in the caverns, sealing the useless second level from invaders. doing this earlier may have saved our duchess from a cruel fate.

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outside, the goblins have left, but they are replaced by swarms of armed kobolds. Long ago, these creatures were ok with simple theft and larceny, but the lure of wealth and riches from our fortress can no longer be ignored. The kobold race has taken arms and they are marching on our lands to sack Whisperwhip.

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I decide to discontinue the use of the cage traps outside. We have no need to spot faraway ambushes because we no longer go too far. I dispatch the kobolds, send the armies outside to protect the mechanics, and start removing them. Many a dwarf has lost his life trying to haul a cage trap back home at a terrible time. No longer will this be a cause of death for our workers.

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Sickness is like kobolds. Invisible, insiduous, yet surprisingly deadly when left rampant. Even the mighty giant tigers are not immune to the terrible curses present in this fort. We now have very few of the beasts left, but at least a breeding couple remains. Just in case, I procure a couple of breedable leopards from the elven caravan, and decide to lock them up somewhere safe to breed a backup batch of war animals.

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Another forgotten beast comes. It has noxious secretions and could easily reach the entrance to HAVEN if not addressed quickly. Thankfully the army is mighty, and the beast is slain without any apparent side-effect.

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Dr Melbil advises me to set two pools at the entrance of the caverns, in order to wash off part of the secretions and ailments covering our soldiers returning from battle. I can't really argue with that logic, as it may save us from a terrible unknown plague in the future. Sadly, filling the pools is taking forever, because the population is really low, and improductive at this point. I watch the ponds fill, one bucket per week, because that's all we can afford to dedicate to water hauling.

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Hey, another forgotten beast. What do you know. this one lost the genetic lotto, and it lacks any special abilities. Laughable. It is now dead.

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Sooner or later I'll need to dig out new space for the fucking quern stockpile, or dedicate a few months to dumping them. The main issue is that many of them are masterpieces, and a lot more are crafted from quartzite or obsidian, which simply wont melt. We are stuck with the damn things for a while is what I'm saying.

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In the background someone made an amulet illustrating the founding of Whisperwhip once, and the rise of queen Cog Floorquest to power, twice.

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Another siege happens soon after. Because the doors are opened to let the mechanics work, some idiots went outside and got a bunch of clothes for themselves. Fools. Everyone knows claiming cloths is unsafe outside of Clothsgiving! Children panic, farmers die, all around a big mess.

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The army sweeps in to clear the mess (or add to it I guess) and everyone rushes back outside, save for the trap dismantlers.

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I try to keep the people busy by activating the generator. (also we need new slabs and blocks). Out of sheer inattention, a mother drops her child in the filling pond of hot water, and forgets to pick it up. The baby drowns.

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Another child decides to run around and play in the slippery deathtrap while people are channeling obsidian. He falls in the water, almost drowns, and barely makes it out alive. Obviously, he proceeds to repeat this experience 7 other times.

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While we are killing our own children out of clumsiness, a new forgotten beast appears in the caverns! Again.

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Ok, scratch that. TWO forgotten beasts appear in the caverns at the same time. Now you know why we gave up on sketching every single one of them...

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I'm told that nobody migrated to the fortress this season, and somehow I have a slight idea of why that would be. Thankfully those two beasts are apparently stuck somewhere, and cannot reach us. One is made of steam, the other is a webbing quadruped.

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Hey, everyone, check this out, another forgotten beast! How improbable and surprising. Go kill it.

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Thanks.

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Third siege in a row, too. In the background kobold ambushes are also springing into action, trying to get a piece of the loot before we fall. Most of the traps have been disabled, so I get everyone inside and lock the gates. Tough luck, assholes. At this point I'm unsure of whether or not we have any bolts left to shoot invaders with.

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We finally have idlers. For a year basically no new orders have been given, and yet it took 13 months for people to clear the place up. Remember, since we activated the statue trap I disabled/cancelled every job in the fortress, and haven't resumed much of them save for booze and war training, and yet only now do people anounce that they are ready for new jobs. Clearly, the migrants need to show up or we are going to die horribly because we can't get anything done.

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In order to finish the mapping of our caverns, I send a few miners to create a tunnel/bridge leading to the north-western lake of the second level. There may be deadly beasts locked up there, or maybe there are gems or awesome metals. We won't know until we get there.

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Sadly ANOTHER MOTHERFUCKING megabeast appears behind us while this project is put forth.

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This new creature is located a bit north of where an older beast, Asithi, is locked down. Unlike Asithi, this new monster has a clear path through the fungi forest to the working dwarves! It escapes the south-western fungi clusterfuck, navigates many dwarfmade tunnels, and crosses the bridge we built during the Megabattle. The current digging project is very close north of there, and I pray the army will make it in time. We don<t have enough time to evacuate and use the traps, so we<ll be exposed to a deadly gas of some sort.

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The workers are busy, unaware of the terrible fate that awaits them.

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A quick soldiers manages to reach the beast seconds before it goes up the ramp and attack the miners. A fierce battle follows.

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Also someone made a dingo bone chain but who cares? At least the creator put a picture of the sweet adamantine battle axe, so i guess im not the only one who's excited about it...

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The battle in the tunnel is over! The soldiers are victorious, but several cheetahs instantly explode when they reach the scene, capturing yet another deadly syndrome. The soldiers decide to walk back home to celebrate...

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BUT they get ambushed by yet another stupid forgotten beast on the way home. It proceeds to knock a warrior down into a small water pit.

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Another battle against a possibly terrible syndrome begins on the bridge leading to the floodgate project. The standing fighters are holding the beast away while their comrade tries to exit the water.

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The poor guy makes it out barely, but then the effects of the toxins spread by his foe kick in, and he falls dead.

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More soldiers fall prey to the bleeding sickness, and they collapse as a team on the bridge, over the carcass of their vanquished opponent. Among the victims are Alath, the current militia commander, and Zuglar, who never got to kill anything with the adamantine axe.

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Most of the trainees who faced the titans back in the day died. Few of themn gathered up to form a new mighty militia, consisting of 70 dwarves. When their numbers dwindled, they included 10 new recruits drafted from amidst the cooks and brewers of the fortress. Of all those mighty warriors, only 3 remain alive today. Zublan is mostly blind and crippled from the several exposures to syndromes. Rovod is in a coma since forever... That means Bembul is now Lord commander of the army, raised from a simple cook to the highest rank of the army. also technically the only one right now. 

He turns to the 10 recruits drafted from the fortress' teenagers by Rigoth during her short reign, and explains: ''Sooner or later, I'll die horribly in a very anticlimatic way. When that happens, you guys are the army. The ten of you, all green boys and teenagers, will be in charge of fending off monsters, titans, werebeasts, forgotten nightmares, as well as wave after wave of goblins and kobolds. Better get some fucking training done!''

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in the time it takes to finish the new tunnel, about 70 animals have died of the new syndrome. The final pick strike reveals what lies ahead... A giant, endless underground ocean, filled with stone pillars. At last our knowledge of the caverns is now mostly complete...

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And yet, this knowledge came at a steep price. More and more animals are reported dead every day, and people also claim a farmer fell victim to the syndrome, bleeding out almost instantly as he handled a creature. Our population is now less than a hundred, down from 180 a year or two ago. A cook now leads AND constitues the integrity of our trained army. Animals are exploding in a pool of blood in every part of the fortress, while those who don't are usually rotting away and filling the place with miasma. More and more beasts seem to swarm this place every year, and now kobolds have joined the fight against us.

BUT we have a new artefact axe, so we got that going for us, which is nice...
« Last Edit: August 04, 2015, 06:31:56 pm by Taupe »
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Taupe

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Re: Whisperwhip: Syndrome testing facility
« Reply #170 on: June 27, 2015, 10:31:58 pm »

CHAPTER 76: Forgotten anomalies
End of year 136
Killcount: 57

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A few weeks pass, and the animal numbers drop significantly. Over 120 pets have suffered from massive bleeding and perished following the most recent Forgotten beast attack, as well as the remainder of our veteran warriors. save for a cook who skyrocketed through the ranks, a blind cripple, and a comatose champion, the fort's only frontline of defence is a squad of teenagers untried in real battles.

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As a result, morale is once again pretty fucking low in Whisperwhip. You'd think people would be used to exploding, cancerous or rotting creatures wandering around and dying horrifically, but somehow every traumatising nearby death is as fresh as the first one. Ideally, killing all the pets could be a solution, but then we'd be abandoning another layer of protection. Animals are like that fat friend you bring with you on bear-hunting trips, in case someone needs to trip and get devoured and you don't want it to be you.  I decide to isolate the most angry dwarves, and send a few others in remote areas, to spread people out and avoid tantrum contagion. Mining adamantine and marble works well, and so does hauling the boulders across absurd distances.

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in dealing with the dwarves slowly getting sadder, I forget to address a potential danger. An old Stoneworkers has begun an artefact, but he can't locate any glass! Somehow we used it all for large pots. before I can get a bit more done, it is too late. The stoneworker has gone berserk!

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Before he can be neutralised, Meng the stoneworker grabs a nearby pick and slowly starts murdering the fuck out of a retired planter. Ouch... The new recruits' first official duty is thus to fucking kill another insane dwarf. That bodes well...

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Before the body has even hit the ground, I suddenly have a new assignment for the militia. A forgotten beast is assaulting the doorstep to HAVEN, and it is too late to evacuate the caverns and raise the bridge. Thankfully, their intense dodging training pays off, and the fight goes our way, without any casualty or dire exposition to the spittle.

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Meanwhile outside, elves are getting assaulted by goblins. If they can reach our fortress on their own, they will live. Otherwise, goodbye. We aren't splitting outside to trigger ten thousand ambushes. I take a look at the recently emptied corpse stockpiles and notice they are once again filled to the brim. Just how many cheetahs did we have before the incident, and what the heck are they eating?

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Anyway, no point crying over spilled elves. There is still good we can do, and things we can work on to avoid pointless incidents. I was so used to people finding all they needed during a mood, I stopped paying attention to them. I order a bunch of glass to be created by Aristotle, to avoid another fiasco. The duchess' death also reminds me that many of our nobles have died recently. We'll need to expand the noble tomb area so that the replacements I nominated can have a nice place to rest once, well, once something goes bad again.

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Speaking of strange moods, I know people will usually prefer adamantine bars to normal metals, and possibly prefer adamantine threads and cloths to the normal versions. I have no clue how to make adamantine cloth, but thread we definitely have lying around just in case. But I also want to see if people will use cut adamantine instead of normal cut gems. Since I'm not going to waste adamantine on untrained cutters, and because all the previous jewelers were eaten over the years, I nominate a young boy to this duty. Modesty, ironically, will be in charge of slowly mastering the art of cutting precious gems, so that he may one day create the most perfect adamantine jewel known to the universe.

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But enough with not being attacked all the time! Here comes another forgotten beast. It is made of flame but lacks any special abilities, so clearly this will be an easy victory of the True Handles and their teenage hormone-filled fury.

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I take a second to meditate on the creature's name. the fact that such a seemingly wimpy forgotten beast has a nickname is curious. From experience, flame monsters are very easy to dispatch, and this one lacks any form of syndrome or unique attack.How did it... OH!

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...It would seem that being made of flame actually is an attack in of itself. In a few seconds, the area around Itvid the carvy knives catches fire, and before long the floor it has appeared on is engulfed in flames.

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While it would seem that Itvid has a path to the fortress, it is not moving at all. Maybe I'm miscalculating paths and stuff, so while the plateau stops being aflame, we'll send the woodcutters to get rid of a few trees blocking the way maybe possibly.

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Meanwhile, one cavern level below, a new forgotten beasts enters the region. As with many others spawning in this area, it appears to be stuck and harmless. That means we can focus on dispatching the current issue, Itvid, who seems unwilling to attack somehow.

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I send the soldiers to the front, but before they can get a hold of Itvid the carved knives, said monster hurls a ball of flame toward the approaching troops, from absurdly far away.

Wait. Is that fucking legal? Can it really DO that? Because for a zero ability forgotten beast, Itvid is strangely packed with them from what I can tell. Ok, the soldier dodged the fireball, but now the new level is on fire. retreat, retreat, wait for this one to burn out as well.

New plan, we wait till every single area of that cavern is scorched and extinguished, and THEN we charge at Itvid. The soldiers can dodge a fucking fireball probably, so it'll take a few seconds for them to approach and kill this asshole.

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Ducim apparently did not dodge the fireball as requested. Heappears to no longer be on fire, but may or may not be bleeding profusely from everywhere thanks to multiple first degree burns covered by heavy metal plates of hot steel. Oups. Well, Ducim, that's what you get for enrolling in the army. Against your will. Anyway, ducim rolls around on the floor for a while, goes back upstairs and then decides he's gonna be fine.

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The gods have a sick sence of humor. While the caverns are slowly filling up with fire and smoke, the outside is seeing the second rain we've had in 40 years here. Thanks, Armok, for such a clever joke on us.

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As the rain stops abruptly, before it could wash off anything, so do the flames die out. Time for a fucking confrontation, at last!

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They won't move closer. are they afraid to use the ramps? Are those ramps unusable? no, they aren't. I tell them to station closer instead opf going for the kill, and they obey. Itvid launches a fireball from between two spore trees, and the troops move right to get some cover. They won't, somehow, go and attack the beast. Why? Is there some invisible wall or something? I dispatch two woodcutters to carve a path where a path shouldn't be required at all.

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This is Datan. She is 70 years old, a legendary engraver and part-time hobbyist treeslayer. Her upper body is also melted, because even tho we can't shoot at the monster, it can shoot at us.

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Datan tries to run for safety, but promptly melts in flames. her body now lies far deep, with Itvid between us and her. A bunch of dudes rush to grab it, and cancel when they can't find a path, or get attacked by fireballs. I decide to forbid the bodies and all gear carried by datan. In time, she will become a ghost. Then grass and spores will grow around her grave, and the beast will set them aflame, and then Datan's corpse will burn once more and vanish from existence along with her clothes.

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It seems we can't get to Itvid for some reason, but I'm willing to bet by now that he, too, cannot reach us. We must now avoid this specific section of cavern, for it now belong to a glitched motherfucker. A few moments later, people report to me that the woodcutter is dead, but so is a second victim. strange, I didnt catch this event, but I assume this must have been when people tried to get the corpse and got shot by a fire missile. Wait, none of those reported deaths are named Datan. What the shit killed those dudes?

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I turn around. the deaths aren't from the north, they come from downstairs. What the hell?

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As I reach the second layer of the cavern, i realise, too late, the mistake I've done while planning our assault on Itvid the carved knives. In front of me lies the corpses of three haulers,  mutilated by a gigantic creature, named Xun. The survivors are too scared to tell me anything. What happened? WHAT HAPPENED HERE???? I try to get an answer, but everyone still alive is dizzy, feverish, and delirious. A strange aroma fills the air, like gasoline or air freshener, something enticing yet indubitably wrong...

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People are rushing downstairs to grab the corpses of the fallen. WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU GUYS?????? I scream at them, scream at them to flee, and in a half-chocking voice I declare a general alert. strange gas is coming from downstairs. In the middle of a giant cloud I see a hammerdwarf enter combat with a monstruous shape, unable to tell what it is. the soldier tries to slay the beast, but waves of forgotten beast gas is knocking him away and inflicting serious damage. Then, as the gas dissipates for a moment, I catch a glimpse of the creature, and Xun catches a glimpse of me.

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''A shrike is a bird'' is the last thing that ever crosses my mind.

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« Last Edit: August 04, 2015, 06:32:06 pm by Taupe »
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Taupe

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Re: Whisperwhip: Syndrome testing facility
« Reply #171 on: June 27, 2015, 10:37:12 pm »

Because it's been 40 years already, Here is the updated map!!! I've had it uploaded for a while now, but waited until now to post the link, to avoid giant trap-shaped spoilers.
« Last Edit: June 27, 2015, 10:40:15 pm by Taupe »
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Immortal-D

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Re: Whisperwhip: Syndrome testing facility
« Reply #172 on: June 28, 2015, 08:03:36 am »

*applause*, lol.  I'm curious, what is the oldest migration wave Dwarves you have?  Is anyone from the Sky Pig era still alive?

Taupe

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Re: Whisperwhip: Syndrome testing facility
« Reply #173 on: June 28, 2015, 07:52:52 pm »

*applause*, lol.  I'm curious, what is the oldest migration wave Dwarves you have?  Is anyone from the Sky Pig era still alive?

Surprisingly, 13 dwarves survived through the Skypig incident and made it to this day. There is an easy pattern to grasp here, all of them are doctors/engravers/nobles. Nobles survived by being in their own bedrooms involving a private dinning table. They spend most of their time in a fancy room doing nothing and not interacting with anyone, so it's the safest way to avoid danger and tantrums. The 4 doctors became doctors once shit hit the fan;  most of the people who come to them are in a coma, so they get their face punched less often. Having no other job activated, including hauling and dumping, ensures they are always focusing on patients, but it also kept them out of harms way. Finally we have the engravers. Creating masterpieces constantly makes them happy with work, and they are usually alone in safe areas where nothing is happening yet.

Notable survivors include Squiddwarf, (actually a founding member) Dr Melbil, Duke Tun, the mayor, and manager Stukos. the others are surgeons and detailers.

Rovod the Champion is actually the oldest, post-skypig member of the fort.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2015, 07:58:32 pm by Taupe »
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Taupe

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Re: Whisperwhip: The next generation
« Reply #174 on: June 29, 2015, 11:19:15 pm »

CHAPTER 77: The next generation
Year 137 (So i've been writing a lot of 23x recently, oups)
Killcount: 58

They say the fortress is attacked by a monster from the depths. Usually I'm not too afraid, because that's something they say every other week here. It's been like that since I was born. I'm told in other fortresses they have pets and animals that are raised and butchered for meat. Weird, here we simply get attacked by giant creatures and butcher them for the year's meals. I know a lot about those creatures, and the stories of those who faced them, because my mother was a Beastslayer. Kel was her name, and many forgotten beasts she vanquished over the years, before a stronger one drowned all the heroes. her brother died in that battle too, and they say he was a great general, before he grew depressed and weird. My grandmother i know nothing of, except that she was the sister of a mighty warrior princess, and also to a vampire. And their mother was a queen, before she moved to the capital here and never was seen again.

Our history makes very little sence, I'll be honest.

Since there is no queen and no overseer, the fortress of Whisperwhip is ran by Tun the duke, a scary man who loves querns a lot. I mean, a lot. They say Tun never takes any actual decisions, because he's usually too busy admiring querns. except the decision to order more querns, which he takes a lot. Today, tho, he has summoned me to the mighty royal chamber, so named because they lack any form of monarch whatsoever and aren't the fanciest quarters in the fortress anymore. I went past the empty crafting rooms, devoid of any workshops whatsoever, only filled with gigantic empty chambers. Past that I must cross a giant room full of ''our prettiest querns of all'', which is basically a place filled to the brink with dingo. One of the dingo looks at me funny, then his leg rot off and he runs off, leaving behing a purple trail of miasma cloud. It happens a lot. In the background, I spot a lion slowly running out of blood while patrolling the corridors. I'm told years ago, the fortress had something called cats, which were like mini cheetahs (weird?) but they all died because they didnt have enough blood to lose.

Anyway, I get past the dingos and knock on the copper doors. The royal bedrooms are actually very, very large but lack any of the super-awesome epic furniture created by the crafters recently, like super shiny gem-filled statues decorated with the bones of a thousand rotten dingos. Here, in Tun's room, a giant decorated rose gold throne sits, fully engraved with gems everywhere, yet the rest of the room is plain, filled with standart silver statues. The dinning room is filled with copper thrones and tables, while I know for a fact that deep underground, there is a magical room filled with silver walls and silver chairs and emerald tables and possibly unicorns. Tun sits on his thrones, busy deciding wether 2 or three querns would be more appropriate to order this week. ''yes, 2 sounds reasonable'' he mumbles. The duke was always sorta weird, but he's grown stranger since his wife died a few months back.

''Ah, enter, child.
-You asked for me, your quern-nes?
-Why yes, of course. What's your name, already?
-Modesty, son of Kel the Beastslayer.
-Yes, that's right. And I'm told you've been designated for a new job recently by Dumat the overseer?
-Yes, I'm to cut gems and create wealthy items, in the hopes of creating a cut adamantine gem.
-For querns.
-For strange moods.
-Yes, for artefact querns I see. Well, kid, guess what Dumat is fucking dead now.
-...
-That's right, and we need a new broker. Since Dumat sort of almost named you as a replacement by personally giving you a job that's related to wealth, I want you to become the new broker.
-Hum, yes, sir! I will do my best to trade with elves and humans and the colonies, and get Whisperwhip richer... (altho i know nothing about the value of anything at this point)
-Excelent. Now, you may go, and take care of your duties.
-Yes, your quern-nes (that's how he likes to be called)

I bow, get up, and turn around, ready to leave the throne room, when the duke drops this bomb on me from across the room: ''Oh also the broker was also the overseer, and I'm too lazy to change the paperwork for that. so now you're in charge of administrating the fortress and saving us from this giant murderous bird, kthanks''.


What.

*   *   *   *   *


So apparently, I just became overseer. For the record, I'm a thirteen years old  boy dabbling in gem-cutting. I've spent my entire life so far hauling corpses and getting dropped in the obsidian generator by my mother. I know little things about running a fortress, but thankfully I've learned the basics of this fortress, which are:
1-goblins attack and kill civilians
2-monsters attack and kill soldiers
3-corpses must be dumped in lava.
4-Everything else won't get done.

Armed with this knowledge, I try to figure out the best way to solve the current problem, aka a giant bird spitting deadly vapors is rampaging the wet caves (this is how we call the middle caverns, us kids. ) I happen to know a few soldiers, because appoarently everyone in this fortress is either my age or a 100 years old traumatised noble. As it so happen, i grew up with most of the army, so I go pay them a visit. They are busy training, when i break the news.
''Hey guys, I have bad news. Dumat is dead and apparently I'm overseer. We are supposed to save the fortress from a giant monster.
-Which kind of monster? does it breath FIRE? asks one hammerdwarf. I heard a fire monster is stuck and killed many people.
-No, hum, this one is named Xun, and it's a big bird that spits deadly vapors and...
-Did you say a biiiiird?''

One of the soldiers, this one's named Immortal-D the second, comes out of the supply depot with something shiny. I know this item. a legendary axe, carved from the greatest weaponsmith in the fortress. Smoothbanners, a battle axe made of pure adamantine, the fabled metal. It is the greatest weapon known to mankind, and as such, was never used in battle. Not out of respect, it's just, hum, the wearer got paralysed, and died of absolute generalised haemorrhage before he could swing it.

''What are you doing with that?
-That's the weapon imma use to kill the bird. It's in my genes. I've killed a few elk birds. My father was a legendary bird puncher, and I'm really super certain his father probably hated chickens in some way too!''

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Immortal-D the second drags the axe that's as big as himself, yet surprisingly light, and ventures into the caverns below. He disappears for a while, followed by his friends, but soon he re-emerges, with a bird head in one hand, and a bloodied axe in the other. He starts reciting the story, of how he got to punch the bird multiple times and then chopped his head off because it was a bad guy. His father would be proud. ID the second is now the second generation of legendary bird punchers. That's not a legendary puncher applying his skill to birds, no. that's a very average fighter applying his fist to legendary birds. In any case, that's a 59th kill if I learned anything in murder-history class.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
What's more, the legendary axe Smoothbanners has been bloodied, decapitating its first victim right off. The first victim of this axe is a forgotten beast, how impressive and fitting! I try to takes a few notes for the next murder-hiostory class, but then I realise I'm the overseer now so I probably don't have to take classes anymore.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
With the various deaths, the population has dropped to 90. As ID the second explains how he got his giant bird head to some new dwarves, he starts getting dizzy, and pale, and really week. People carry him to the hospital, along with many of his squadmates. ''Is he gonna die?'' I ask one of the many strange surgeons doing maintenance work on a mysterious bloated creature sitting on a table. ''Oh, yeah, probably yeah'' is the asnwer the doctors give me.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The doctors identify the symptoms as pain, dizzyness and fever, which frankly is the least in-dept diagnosys one could make. ''Yes, he's clearly unconscious and like sick'' the first one says. ''oh and dont forget pain. Write that down, he probably has that too'' his colleague replies.

My first act as overseer is, I guess, making sure the people we can't reach get a decent funeral, which is a fancy dwarven way of saying we'll slab his name on a piece of rock and dump it in a corner. Ghosts just love that kind of attention. Some stories tell of ghosts who loved our slabs so much, they got angry just to make sure we would honor them with a slab.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
A guy named Aristotle wanrs me that he crafted the required number of green glass. I have no idea what's up with that. clearly I should consult Dumat's notes on the fortress. I do so, and the closest documents detail the migration waves. Namely, the absolute lack of. One was supposed to show up today, but nobody migrated to Whisperwhip. I should investigate why, maybe there's something strange with that. I've heard strange events are caused by something caused ''bugs'', whatever that means.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
I also receive news of a new artefact, mostly another piece of wooden jewelry. Dumat had some notes on artefact, and it seems he wanted to name many people as temporary armorsmiths, just to train them a bit. I decide to follow his lead. One of the forges is set to only produce copper bucklers on repeat. Anyone who does not have the arbitrary number of ''4'' next to his crafting skill can access this forge and get some training. that way the incompetent crafters will practice their secondary trade to a certain degreee, and ignore the forge once they get skilled enough to make armoring their highest moodable skill (See guys I'm actually learning stuff!)

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
I'm told a few mechanics are alone outside disasembling cage traps, in order to ensure that lone mechanics won't have to go outside to deal with cage traps. not sure i understand this strand of logic, but alright. What matters is the result, which is the mayor getting ambushed by a wide range of kobolds. Thank Armok, she jumps away and return to the safety of the fortress...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The mayor dodges various new kobold problems, until goblins also join the battlefield!!

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The army is mostly being cured of a potentially fatal infection, so they can do nothing to save a young child from being kidnapped. Nooo! To avoid any pointless deaths, I activate the lever and seal the fortress as soon as what I think is everyone makes it back inside. If ID2 and his friends get back on their feet, we'll think about going outside, otherwise this door remains closed.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Suddenly, even with the bridge raised, a miner is attacked! somehow, a master goblin thief managed to sneak past all our dwarves, and lurked in wait for this very moment. Sadly for him, the miner is avenged when an axe lord decides to join the battle.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
When he hears about the fort being in danger, Immortal-D, Aristotle and the rest of the gang immediately jump out of their recovery bed and grab their gear. They obviously still suffer ill effects from the syndrome, effects that nobody truly understand, yet they are all back in the training room within a few hours, fully geared. That's the spirit!

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
In the meantime, I've been perusing the books left by Dumat. some old notes on traps seem to include a magma floodgate meant to liquify my great-grand-mother and her undead army (what!) as well as backup plans for piercing an aquafier, labbeled ''fail'' in big red letters. I also found more recent notes, obviously written by the strange mayor, detailing a forgotten beast trap. This last one seems more relevant to our interest right now...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
I arrange a meeting with the miners, and together we create a modified version of these traps to defend HAVEN. Work progresses smoothly. It' clear those guys have been striking the earth long before I was born.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Far in the distance, we can see a caravan, but they have left the wagons there, instead bringing items on foot to the depot. With the army up, I decide to dispatch Immortal-D to the plains, in order to protect the merchants, and the woodcutters. I'm not sure what's causing the wagon to be stuck, but probably it's linked to the faraway masses of trees. The forest to the south has never really been exploited, what with constant sieges and all, so it has grown without interference for decades now. the army will supervise the area, while the woodcutters will chop down a path for future caravans. I need to arrange business meetings with other civilisations if I am to become a bromer, after all.

Also, for his efforts in killing Xun the Shrike, Immortal-d the second has been promoted to Captain of the guards, but everyone simply call him the artefact wielder now.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
since I haven't given any real tasks to our iddlers until now, a few of them announce that they are free to do new stuff if I want them too. I tell them to grab a few axes, and help with the chopping. I want this outdoor excursion to be over as soon as possible.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
attracted by fresh loot and outside dwarves, a new horde of greenskins arrives in the prairie. The army is able to hold most of them off while the woodcutters run back to the fortress, but one of them falls prey to the invaders. Immortal-d is swinging his axe left and right, and the light-blue blade of his axe is cleaving limbs and breaking bones like they were made of pudding.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
More goblins keep coming from every side! We are outnumbered, retreat, retreat!

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
We return to the safety of the Whisperwhip fortress. Some didn't make it. Clearly, we will die here slowly but surely unless we can get new migrants. While I browse various encyclopedias, the miners and mechanics manage to complete the trap for HAVEN entrance. 3 levers are added, each in a position similar to the levers controlling the so-called skypig-machine.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Ah, there it is! an obscure passage on dwarven law, inhabitation, real-estate and migration explains our problem. Basically, because of a loophole, the number of people a fortress has or once had limits the migration waves. Obviously, the numbers of 1000 to 3000 are normally enough to cover even the oldest fortresses of all, and then it shouldn't apply. but somehow, it seems that someone actually added a note stating that, according to some addendum, these numbers are to include animals, and invaders, because they count as people and we shouldn't disrepect their value as living beings just because they aren't dwarves. Obviously this close was written to no doubt cement a peace with an elven kingdom.

So, long story short, it seems that we can't get new migrants because the immigration agents of the citadel of clutches have been counting every goblin, forgotten beast and kobold that ever came here, as well as all the cats that ''migrated'' here via the delivery stork for baby animals. (look im 13). So according to the records, Whisperwhip is currently an over-capacity metropole busting with over 6000 thousand ''residents''. I make a copy of all our notes, paperwork and documents, just in case something goes wrong.

Then, I start reading advanced scripting laws for legislations and regulation, hoping to find a loophole that would circumvent this issue. apparently, the work of a curious and enigmatic dwarf named Kurik Amudnil once invoqued such a loophole to solve a similar issue.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The process is long and harduous, especially since i know nothing of the mysterious language used by the lawyer Kurik Amudnil, or the tools he refers to in his documents. Nevertheless, I finally slapstick together something half decent and create my own, semi-functional loophole to the dwarven rules, and post the news to all the colonies. In effect, I've registered all the dead goblins, animals and pointless critters as ''migrated to another realm'' instead of ''resident, dead''. Maybe this will bring more migrants. Hell, it may even convince the queen to move here at long last! I'm sure the arrival of a real monarch to this place would restore prosperity, joy and hope to our settlement!

I am unsure if my efforts paid or not, until someone from the battlements calls for me. ''Migrants! migrants have come, tons of them!''


*   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *

OOC notes: So, the old narrator is dead, and instead we inherit modesty, a thriteen years old with no real skill, yet with a very interesting pedigree. Immortal-D managed to assume his role as rightful heir by saving the fortress, claiming the artefact axe on his own, and defeating a legendary bird like his father before him. The fort is now in charge of a new generation of nobles, as well as new migrants. Compared to the last bunch of chapters, this new perspective should be refreshing, or so I hope. While the events of the recent years were interesting, they happened so thickly that narrating them became a huge issue. I had a lot to tell, a lot to screencap, and very little time around that to actually document the story properly. What ended up happening, is that I had to wait a while, and then finally rushed everything before it was too late. To me those chapters felt just like that, rushed and a bit dry. Not that it could helped, as a lot of details were forgotten in the overall process. A bunch of screenshot were useful to have, but sometimes you think ''yeah I'll remember who did that kill and why'' and in the end you don't, so you end up with a screensahot or two of ''something being dead'' with no satisfying story to tell around it.

Hopefully I've learned my lesson, about how no matter how insane things get, i should refrain from playing too much without updating this thread, lest the story's quality suffers. still, I don't regret it fully, as this could also be interpreted as Dumat himself getting fed up with the situation, and no longer paying attention to details and events, simply mentioning that terrible things happened, and stuff died. ''yeah another forgotten beast from another realm, it died.'' Ultimately, this was this lack of attention to details, and the casualness of this whole war against the forgotten beast, that caused his downfall. More ironically, this happened right after i decided to expand the noble crypts, in case some noble died, never even assuming Dumat could be one of them. In my head, he had plot immunity.

Now, another point that's worth mentionning, is the three hours of fudging around to make a script works. Essentially the game works in a strange way and we weren't getting any more migrants ever. I'll be honest, I played in a very reckless way, firmly believing that should a bunch of dwarves die here and there, we'd eventually get a migrant wave or two to help. When thery didnt show up I assumed something was wrong, but kept going to see if dropping lower would trigger the waves,. It didn't. When the cast changed, I figured this was a good way to actually look up when migrants would come (I honestly didn't check until this chapter, simply ''hoping'' people would finally come and eventually giving up). so I found a workaround to what I'm not sure is a weird feature or a bug. In one hand, it prevents a fortress from becoming immortal over the centuries. In the other hand, your entire survival and migration salvation can be nullified by busy dwarves and large amounts of horny cats. Hey, the pets decided to have 400 babies this year, game over no more migrants.

Because im not sure this is a bug, I'm also not sure if fixing it is considered a cheat. So did i cheat? Maybe, maybe not. instead, I'll just explain why this was, to me, a better idea than letting the fortress continue as is. One, while the decreasing number was very tense and climatic, slowly plunging Whisperwhip toward annihilation, it also meant that nothing was getting done. Like, at all. Up to 60 or so dwarves i could maintain basic functions, but then we'd reach a point where the large map combined with the low pop and high wealth would result in a fuckton of items lying around, and not enough people to get rid of them all. We need a minimum workforce dedicated to dumping items and corpses and rags just to ensure that the experience remains pleasant and playable. a rapid death would be interesting, but a slow death would not result in 3o0 dwarves making a last stand. It would be those same 30 dwarves doing nothing, surrounded by thousands of corpses and 10 times that many clothes, running at 4 fps waiting for me to get bored. That, i decided, was not a very interesting or climatic ending for Whisperwhip.

What would be a climatic ending, however, would be a great battle against evil. A mightier forgotten beast than any previously seen. The combined might of many successive ones, coupled with poor decision-making skills on my part. Maybe an epic battle against goblins and monsters on two front finally closing in on the dwarves on both sides. Or maybe, in time, an assault on hell itself.

Or undead.

That's right, the queen we've been waiting for ever since the beginning never got to come here, and maybe, just maybe that's because she too cant migrate to the fortress. That, alone, was worth it for me. So i booted the script, and now we'll be getting migrant waves. That's what i was hoping for. Hell, I named the script ''Summonqueen'' just for that. So that's where we are right now. The end of a great era, and the beginning of a new phase for this fortress, after an incredibly too long 70+ chapters. Thanks to anyone insane enough to read this thing, thanks for bearing with the crappy parts and enjoying the epic ones, thanks for sticking around!

Taupe

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Re: Whisperwhip: The next generation
« Reply #175 on: July 01, 2015, 04:57:35 pm »

CHAPTER 78: The Candy Store
Late in the year 137
Killcount: 59


Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
I'm starting to understand what the older members of this fort are feeling. When I was a kid I was impressed and scared by all the monster stories that this fortress birthed. Now, I've been acting as overseer for about a three months, and I'm already receiving news of a new forgotten monster coming to the caverns. The wet caves, as we kids call 'em. I panick at first, but eventually someone mentions to me that many of the monsters showing up on this floor end up trapped by the overgrown vegetation. Phew!v The migrants are gonna show up soon, and I don't want them to get a bad first impression of Whisperwhip. I wrote the colonies speaking of adamantine and a mighty army, so it would be sorta lame if they showed up and got eaten by a giant dinosaur or whatev'.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
As part of our efforts to make this place seem half-decent, we'll try to clean a little. If this cleaning can avoid senseless deaths, all the better. One stockpile near the fabled ''Ol' Whisperwhip'' is still allowing corpses. It seems that, for decades, people have been braving sieges and ambushes to fill this stockpile, and braving it a second time when dumping sessions were declared. No more, I say! just like the cage traps last year, we are decommisioning this old and dangerous activity zone. People will not go outside unless the army is there to support them, and they have a specific task to do.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
no doubt excited about the incoming newcomers, a metalworker has claimed a magma forge, and grabbed a wafer of adamantine. I wonder what marvel he will create! I also wonder how much adamantine we have at the time. The only way to keep tab of it all, cloth and threads and stones and wafers all, is to browse the very umpractical stock book. Surely there is an easier, and more extravagant way of browsing our adamantine supplies...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
While the strangely moody dwarf gathers material, I begin scouting the caverns, or more accurately, the areas where a cavern isn't. Dumat had many great ideas, but he certainly ommited a bunch of possibilities when it came to expanding the base. For about 10 z-level right above the magma forges, the small pillar transforms into a very large rocky mass, in which many rooms could be carved. Of course I must be wary not to build one level just below a magma channel, in case of a random and terrible accident. Thankfully, there is plent of room here. Being close to the forges, this is a great place to create a vault for the more precious materials Whisperwhip recently acquired, including adamantine and steel bars.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Since I'm in the forges looking over our supplies and making calculations, I have a good look at the materials chosen by our moody worker. Appart from adamantine, he has retrieved many types of pricy gems. Or so I assume. I still have no idea what anything is worth because I didn't get to trade yet.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
I settle for a small storage facility about 3 levels below the forges (the level below hosts a very small stockpile and the magma channel, the level above that remains sealed and safe to prevent magma leaks, and right below will be this building.) Next to me, the worker has settled on more... banal materials to finish his artefact. Dingo bones and logs are definitely not on par with the previous choices...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
And yet, he delivers! The result is a magnificient adamantine spear, of the highest quality possible! It is made of adamantine, decorated with various spikes of gems and wood, and the entire decorations could be described by ''there's a crudely drawn dwarf on it somewhere''. Still, What we need to face giant dinosaur-like entities from the beyond are great weapons, not artwork.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
As such, I too decide that creating something small and banal will not do. A place designed to host our most precious metals should not be boring and unimpressive. Let's make something gigantic to taunt the gods, or my name isn't Modesty.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Excavating such a large room will produce a lot of stone, and as such, it may be wiser to create some new stockpiles for now. The work area around BASE1 appears to me as lacking and ''kinda uncool, man'', so it would be nice to add a few stockpiles and use that space. More stockpiles, I say. No point in corridors going into nowhere.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The first layer is complete, but it's about time this fortress experiences with multiple z-level construction projects. I mean, appart from the arena which is sweet as balls. the main layout is complete, now we need to smooth and engrave this, add statues between each alcove, and obviously channel the middle part to create a cool multi-level vault of awesome.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
And finally, the migrants are at our doorstep! Welcoming them, I ask about which task they excelt at. some mention they are kinda ok at fighting possibly, while others mention a dabbling interest in growing or crafting, which frankly this fortress doesn't need more of. Of particular interest are a glassmaker by trade, as well as an adequate strand extractor. Words can't describe how useful such a migrant will be at this time! With someone half-decent at processing raw adamantine, we'll be able to slowly refine our stockpile into useable bars, which means it could be a good idea to keep mining more candy (we kids call adamantine candy cause candy is sweet). I tell the new guy that he will be practicing his favorite trade nonstop here. Then I take the rest of the bunch to the forges, and into the unfinished vault.

''Your job for now will be to sort out the stockpiles, and bring anything that's adamantine here. Rock, bars, thread, everything will be here, on display. When this is over, we'll start dedicating each of you to an appropriate job, depending on what the fortress needs and your particular aptitudes. If you are tired, feel free to grab a spare bedroom, the upper levels and BASE1 right here have a few available now that hum... well, now that people got married and moved together.''

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
What a fine introduction to the fort! The migrants are presented firsthand with a task that validate our claim to being welathy, as they get to haul tons of cloth-lite shiny metal ores across the fort, into a splendid vault. They seem to be very happy about this new place. The few who start by taking break and grabbing a bedroom are happy to see that our personal chambers are large and furnished, unlike many settlements building 1x2 bedrooms in which one must jump above a cabinet to reach his bed.

The workers are there watching them as they dig the channels to the next floor, happy to greet newcomers, and dodging questions about ''why there are so many fine bedrooms waiting for them''. We explain that, well, it was simpler tyo have spares when we need to move people around the fortress based on their current job. Notice how every part of the fort has bedroms, a dinning hall, and a nice stockpile! Some of them ask why most of the stockpiles are filled with nothing but a huge, chopped down and marinated corpse of what seems to be an eldritch aberration. Oh, hum, that, it's...

''Where are the farms! ask a migrant.
-What are we brewing if there's nothing being planted?
-Did that dog... just lose a leg while walking?
-Sir, sir! Why are there 7 barracks but only 1 squad?
-Who is that strange monster guy in the hospital?
-Why are you in charge if you are visibly a teenager?''


Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Ok, I didn't want to explain all those tiny disturbing details right now. But now there seems to be a new source of trouble in the upper caverns, and that source of trouble does breath a deadly dust. You know when you move to a new hotel and it's not like in the brochure and some flaws become apparent? Well those migrants are about to find out why Whisperwhip is not exactly like my recruitment letter said.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
''Ok, people, i know you have many questions, but what matters is that, for everyone to remain safe and happy, there are a few rules to follow. Rule 1: see that big map of the fortress with blue areas? That's a burrow. Until further notice, I want nobody outside of this burrow. ''

''Sir, Shem is down there fishing. Says there's lots of fish there as if nobody went to catch them for years. Should we go and tell her about the rules?
-...fuck.''


Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Shem is a happy fisher, and she just moved to Whisperwhip to have fun and get rich. The life at the capital seemed like the perfect thing, untiol she went to catch some salmon, and a 34 foot tall Osprey came out of nowhere, and breathed death on her face, knocking her down into the icy lake. Now she is pursued by this deadly bird, and nauseous, and drowning, and she don't liek the capital anymore.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Curiously, the giant bird has a terrible time locating its prey after it falls into the river, probably because its busy filling the area with opaque dust blocking vision. Against all odds, Shem manages to escape the water, and spends a lot of time running around the caverns like she's in a slasher film. The beast tracks her, sometimes spotted or heard between two stone pillars. This goes on for a while. Shem has managed to survive the initial syndrome effects, and now she is half-able to withstand the nausea. sadly, she also appears to be transforming into a miasma golem for some reason. (that's probably bad for her health).

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Shem is now mostly rotting, nauseous, and also suffers from a fever. She is just wandering the corridors blindly, trying to find an escape. She manages to run downstairs, in the small area that leads to the wet caverns.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The osprey follows, turns the corner, and somehow missed Shem as she sneaks past the murderbird and head back upstairs. The giant Osprey simply stands there, not too sure where it should go next. Alright, Shem, you earned it, we'll lower the bridge for you. You can return to Whisperwhip. Shem crosses the bridge, and we raise it once more. What enters the fortress and joins with her former migrants look nothing like what went down there to grab a fish or two. She is barfing everywhere, bloodied, visibly turning into a corpse as she walks, and suffers from several adverse effect from a fever. whenever she walks, a thick shroud of miasma follows.

''...And that's what happen when you don't follow rule one'', I announce.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
In addition to all the health issues, shem seems to be bleeding profusely from mostly everywhere. She leaves a thick trail of blood behind her. Immortal-D asks if he should go down there to kill that bird. ''Nah, better not risk it, we'll use the trap bro''.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The elves show up shortly after, and i manage to conduct my first trading session ever, in which Ioffer a large gem covered in dingo bones for a stockpile of palm wood. fair enough. This gives me the knowledge I need to suddenly price everything in the fortress. According to my evaluation, the wealth of Whisperwhip now surpasses 20 million arbitrary units of value. It's easy to believe, tho, with all the steel, adamantine, and artefacts this fortress has accrued. The migrants are a bit stressed (read: horrified) to see what Shem has turned into, but the call of wealth is enough to keep them quiet. Sure, one dwarf didn't follow the rules and now she cant even talk to express why she's like that, but look at all those silver statues, those obsidian covered rooms, and the fancy spacious bedrooms they have! As long as they respect the rules, don't go where they shouldn't go and obey the alert states, they don't even need to learn what horrors transpire beneath the fortress. If anything, the fate of Shem only served to make them more obedient. nobody ever died from a healthy dose of well-placed fear.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Then at the end of spring, we hear another call from the battlements. ''More migrants have arrived!'' Someone screams. This should help us improve the fortress at a steady rate. I turn to the last wave, who are busy filling the candy store with sweet, sweet adamantine, and i give them one simple directive. ''If those newcomers ask questions, just say everything is perfect here''.

Taupe

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Re: Whisperwhip: The next generation
« Reply #176 on: July 01, 2015, 11:27:12 pm »

CHAPTER 79: Modesty
Year 138
Killcount: 59


Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The new migrants have arrived, and someone crafted a toy axe to celebrate. A toy axe, mind you. I now have enough expertise in the brokering skill to know it is kinda bad. Sure, someone made a picture of our adamantine spear, but that's not really an adamantine spear in itself. Why didn't you use refined silver, or stupid adamantine? We don't have any threads or cloths made of the precious metal, but obviously this person wouldn't have used it even if we did. What a shame!

I can feel the new migrants are judging me, so I've adopted a group of war dogs to protect me, and keep company to Bomrek, my super awesome duper-pig pet.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
To avoid any further wasted artefacts, I had a loom work station installed inside the candy store, and a few threads have been converted to adamantine clothes. the high quality final product is worth 10 000 units, even before it is converted to anything that can be used. Holy Armok on a plate! The migrant strand extractor is doing a good job of slowly producing threads, and the extra hands around the fort means the old dedicated extractor can also practice his trade.

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Instead of fighting this terrible Osprey, I've had the idea to lock it up using some blocks. It can no longer leave the transit area between the two cavern layers, ah! Immortal-D is sad that he didn't get to kill another legendary bird, but i remind him that this is how his father died. He replies that this was also how his father lived.

Thoughts of my own mother come back to me. She, too, was a beastslayer like I-D the first. She died in a confrontation with the fiercest beast we ever knew, and did not flee. Would she be disapointed to see me now, locking away monsters instead of facing them? She also wanted me to be humble and modest, and here I am making fancy gems and increasing the wealth of this fortress. I'm not sure mother would be happy about the soon-to-be-man I have become...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
At least the bottom caverns are not off-limit, so it's time to resume adamantine acquisition. I found some special plans in Dumat's document pile, detailing a ''safety extraction device''. Basically, he suspected that parts of the adamantine spire might be hollow and host strange, dangerous (-er) creatures, and devised a plan to locate them and maximize adamantine gains. simply put, the device includes a weight released from a support and being released onto the spire. If the top of the spire collapse, then it was hollow. If it doesn't, 16 new blocks of raw adamantine can be extracted safely. Rinse, repeat, until something goes wrong.

Obviously, along the line something could go wrong. that's why before attempting to dig the interior of the spire, we must first seal the entire quarry from the rest of the region. Just like it was done with sealing the obsidian generator from the caverns, only this time the quarry is awkward, overgrownth, and the ceiling is several levels above the thing. Once this is done, access to the mining complex must be converted into a thightly sealable corridor containing several bridges linked to a lever. Build a weight, link to release, seal the complex, test for hollow-ness, reopen the complex and mine a layer while a new weight is constructed and wired. A lenghty process in any case.

I've dispatched a few woodcutters and masons to lay the basics of the isolation dome, but this is a task that will take aproximately forever, so better start now, slowly. I'll try and remember to send new workers to advance the project once each step is complete. The first thing I hear is that manager Stukos has sealed himself inside a locked part of the dome and is slowly dying. We must cancel and demolish all existing progress to get him out.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
A third group of migrants arrive, bringing our numbers up to 126 dwarves. Right after I'm done explaining the rul;es of the fort, of which there is essentially one, a new forgotten beast is spotted in the lower caverns. A giant ass. LOL. No wait, not that kind of ass I'm told. Too bad. Don't worry, I'm told this one cannot reach us.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
A few migrants ask why we should obey my command as overseer, even tho I'm thirteen years old and apparently my grasp on sanity is questionable. Well, pal, because here's Shem, who didn't obey the one rule and explored where she wasn't supposed to. now look how she's basically a grotesque zombie from your worst nightmares, leaving behind a cloud of death and a slippery layer of hot, diseased blood. No seriously, I'm pretty sure there are at least three kilometers of blood trails left by this chick by now, how is she still ali...

Nevermind, Shem just died in front of our very eyes. So yeah, don't forget about rule number one, and respect the burrows.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
I barely remember Logem, but somehow he took a habit of visiting me when he died. He tries to spook me with his weird noises, and the whole ''strangling one of my dogs to death'', but I won't give in to his childish plays. I'm no longer a child, I'm an overseer, asshole, I can't be pushed around!

The next morning, I ask that a slab be engraved for Logem. People simply ask me ''Who?'' and tell me that there is no such ghost in the fortress. I try to show Logem to them, but he is nowhere to be seen when other people are around. He only comes at night, when I sleep, when I'm alone.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Someone comes to me and mentions he made a crundle bone figurine of a dwarf. Hum, good job. Let me know if you made a slab writen ''Logem'' on it, then I'll be happy.

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I decide to focus my attention on the adamantine mines, mostly because sleep is for the week and I don't like ghosts. Progress is moving swiftly on the veins of the spire, even if the dome is slow to build. Our adamantine stores will be so full soon, that I might replace the steel bars on the lower vault floor with just another adamantine storage. Adamantine is more flashy than steel anyway.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Rumors of a new forgotten beast reach me, but once again the wet caves are where the action is taking place. since they are currently sealed, I decide not to worry about it and keep worrying about other things, like OMG WHY CAN'T ANYONE PRODUCE A SLAB FOR MY GHOST!.I'd move to HAVEN, but then I'd just be more alone more often...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Oh yeah, and then a bronze collossus approached the fortress. Immortal-D the second was ready to face the beast in combat to test his axe, but the monster just... stumbled into a cage and now it is trapped. If the cages are made to contain even a collossus, can we all agree that a lot of material is wasted on cages that will only be used for say, a goblin? Also, that was anticlimatic. This is why using cage traps isn't that much FUN, you guys.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Maybe the key to happyness is to just, I dunno, not be wearing rags covered in troll blood all the time? I've commissioned a better clothier room, which is now made of pure silver blocks, and the workshops are made of adamantine bars. And the doors are made of silver, highest quality, and decorated with gems and bones. This is the pimpiest room. now someone go in there and craft some real clothes. We have tons of dyed threads and cloth rolls, I want 30 pants, 30 sock pairs, 30 cloaks, and put the leatherworkers on it too, as many of those made of leather. The time of rags and sucky clothing in Whisperwhip is over!

''We didn't have any fancy clothes in my day. Yaknow, before I DIED!
-Shut-up, Logem, LEAVE ME ALONE!''

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Someone made a quartzite coffer, of the highest quality. instead of leaving it there, I have it brought to the room of Manager Stukos, since he's been around for a while and many other nobles have artefacts in their bedrooms. I browse the list of containers, and notice we also have an unused bunch of artefact bags, one of which is made of forgotten beast leather. Bring this to my room.

At night, the leather bag looks at me. Did my mother kill the beast it is made of? Is she watching me right now, through the bag? Or is that...

''LOGEM stop haunting my artefact bag!
-Fine fine, but I'll kill another dog!
-Gasp!''

The next morning, I try to visit the craftdwarf workshops, and finally locate Logem amidst a pile of names. strangely, no one has registered him as a ghost. I personally slab every logem in the list, and place the slabs outside in what used to be the farms. The night comes, and I seem to be free of hauntings.

I'm also two dogs short.

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Thankfully, the new clothes are here. I grab a pair of silk shoes. forgotten beast silk shoes. Did my mother kill that beast too? I need a drink.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
In fact, everyone will need a drink sooner or later. With a replenished population, we'll have to resume food production at some point. not now, tho. to change my mind, i decide to massively rearrange the kitchen floor into something more spacious and containing much less fungi. Most of the workshops are currently out of use, so that's the best time to start such a project. The area previously used for farms will include pets ready for butchering. I've taken the liberty of sending a good amount of dingos to the block, because I'm seriously tired of watching sick and useless animals die horrificly all the time.

The new kitchens will include a direct access to food stockpiles and to animals, connecting those to the butchers and tanners upstairs in the courtyard. There will also be a connection to two refuse stockpiles, cutting short on long hauling trips. We'll have plenty of room for milling and cooking plants, too, of which we apparently have a trillion. All and all, this building will be much better and much more efficient.

then I notice that there won't be enough space for a northern row of workshops unless I rebuild the stockpiles above. suddenly, a need for unmet perfection strikes me. Is this why Dumat never touched the place? Because he knew such a terrible misalignment was inevitable? Some people suggest that i go to sleep. What, with the leather bag and the slippers watching me? Are you mad?

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Two beasts join the party. One of them is made of flame and arrives in the wet caverns, so we won't actually fight it. I'm so sorry mom! The second one looks nasty, and would you look at that, it is heading straight toward the entrance to HAVEN, which mean everyone hauling stuff from the candy mines will be easy targets.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Well, the good news is, I had the wisdom to install a trap in there. I'm not sure how efficient it will be if I trigger it, because hilariously enough, the stranded miners and haulers have to cross the stupid trap to return home safely. You can probably see a design flaw here. I wait as long as I can for as many miners to return safely, then I lock down the golden bridge, praying that the missing workers will be smart enough to notice there is no path, and stay the fuck out of the trap room.

Then the beast enters, and even tho it has a very scary aura of disease and decay, it doesn't seem TOO tough in combat, because the combined might of the various war animals serving as ''bait'' is actually overcoming it. The beast is seriously injured. I'm afraid that the pets will die of a curse before landing the killing blow, leaving time for the monster to heal and exit the trap. At this point, it would be a waste to trigger the death machine, so I simply lower the bridge and send Immortal-d and his boys. Using crossbows and good aim, they manage to execute the beast without interacting with the strange secretions surrounding it. Victory!

And then I notice the animals have contracted something very nasty. Some dogs are suffocating from the syndrome. some lions are suffocating from the syndrome. Some of my dogs are suffocating from the syndrome. Is that what you wanted, mother? Is that what you want for us?

The loss of several pets will not shake my will. I know the migrants are looking at me strange, and question the authority bestowed upon me by the Duke. Well, look at all the dying dogs, this is why you follow my orders around, people. This is Whisperwhip. I've spent my entire life here and look at me, I'm fine. so either you follow my lead or end up like Shem, or like these painfully suffocating lions over there. You can't leave now. Whisperwhip is your life. If you leave, you,ll carry with you the seed of various curses and disease you've been unwittingly exposed to, and it'll affect the rest of the world. Every pet in every fortress will die, every child, every dwarf. Nobody can leave.

Hey, you know what would change our mind and make this place a happier fortress? Cleaning the exterior! I'll dispatch the soldiers to deal with all those ambushes that just triggered, while the lot of you take care of the junk lying around. Mettalic crap, bring it to the forge for smelting. Small or large thing, dump it. Tooth, corpse, broken clothes, dumping too. the rest you can wear, lucky folks. We call that Clothsgiving over here, and it is a special day during which nothing can go wrong. It doesn't matter that a few goblins shot arrows at you, or that all my dogs are exploding and suffocating while I drag dead folks around. Clothsgiving is a fine day for fine people and nothing will ever take that away from us. Nobody. Not even you, mom!

...

OMFG Bomrek is dead. My pet pig just crumbled into bits of gore...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)



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So obviously, I didn't mean for things to go this way. I just finished up the latest chapter, and I was thus ready to play. I spend about ten minutes sorting inventories for dumping and melting outside, when suddenly I notice bomrek the pig dying, and immediately Modesty is gone batshit crazy. I honestly expected him to last more than a year. In retrospect, it was probably bad for a teenager to be named Overseer of Whisperwhip. Scratch that, it's probably bad for anyone to be named overseer in Whisperwhip. regardless of my intends, Modesty was chosen because he was the only named dwarf that could fill in the role of narrator easily. His relatives were important characters, and he himself had been given a specific task by Dumat right before he died. My main problem now is that I'm out of such dwarves.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2015, 06:32:47 pm by Taupe »
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Taupe

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Re: Whisperwhip: a megabeast steakhouse
« Reply #177 on: July 13, 2015, 08:01:20 pm »

Chapter 80: Colossal blunder
Year 138 to 140
Killcount: 60

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
With Modesty dying in a very anticlimatic manner, I find myself without any worthy narrator. Truth be told, we have reached a point where it's probably better to just let things run their course and wait for something noteworthy to happen. As such, two whole years pass, during which the fort receives fresh migrants and newcomers, bringing back the population to an eventual 174. that's including many births as well, around ten or so.

Dumat is dead, and Modesty lasted exactly a year. Still, I find my experience to be lacking if I'm not picturing the fort run, in my head, by one of those dwarves. So I start looking for a new overseer. The fortress in front of me is the same as it has been for over 40 years, but I find myself looking at a totally different cast of dwarves. A few nobles remain, but they are all mostly insane or incompetent, or comatose. None of them truly fit the mantle of overseer. None but Bembul. He who arrived a few months before the end of the civil war in 103, became a master brewer and cook over the following decades. His job was to keep the fort drunk and the soldiers fed. Up until the fateful day where the soldiers were few, and the meal many. On that day, Bembul joined the Magical Gloves and became a fighter, alongside legendary brewers Besmar and Firsal. After the megabattles, Bembul finds himself to be the only survivor of the entire army, alongside a cripple and a guy unconscious for the last decade. Whisperwhip has asked much of him, and he answered faithfully. Bembul is worthy to lead both the army and the fortress as far as I'm concerned.

While browsing for an overseer, I find myself looking into the family and relationships of the dwarves, something I was very bad at doing up until recently. This is essentially why I've discovered that many important characters in the story were in fact chicks about three or 4 decades into the thread. This is also why I woke up after twenty years and realised one of our elite soldier was also the youngest princess of our civilisation. In fact, the more I look into things, the more I notice how many, many dwarves share the same family connections. It seems the queen being immortal led to many, many royal children, all scattered thorough the years. It seems that the citadel of clutches is really into consanguinity, because everyone I see seems to be descended from either the royal couple, or maybe two others. For example, Tun the duke is actually from the royal family himself, being the grandson of queen Cog Floorquest. His father was some prince, apparently, of which we have at least 7. Essentially, everyone is everyone else's cousin, aunt, or grandnephew.

I spend some time checking each new migrant, to see if they are related to someone I know. Each profile reveal tons and tons of connections. This fisherdwarf is the father of 5 of our dead soldiers. This other is Tun's niece, and cousin to 70 people in the fort, dead or alive. Actual number. Quite tragically, many migrants are the parents of past residents, who probably came to visit their children. Sorry, people, everyone you loved died horribly. Confronted with all those disapointed relatives, I take a look at the graveyard, filled by hundreds of coffins without any slabs. The mourning dwarves don,t even have the luxury of visiting the right tomb, as most of them are un-labelled. I never cared about slabbing all the victims, until I pictured a legion of crying women wandering the crypts, praying to Kadol that one of those tombs is actually their son's.

While most of the migrants could be summed up by ''Cousin Urist, dabbling grower who likes fishing'', there will be three dwarves who will stand from the lot, greatly so. The first one is a qualified strand extractor, something I would move earth and sky to keep alive. Hilariously enough, this is exactly what this story is about. Let's start from the begining, shall we?

*   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *  *

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
As Modesty is still alive, wandering the halls like a maddwarf, we receive a forgotten beast, like clockwork. It seems like the animals in the trap room will take care of it, until the syndrom kick into action and most of the fighting felines fall unconscious. I decide to open the bridge and dispatch the soldiers to finish the job.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The beast is slain, but before it falls appart, our foe takes Aristotle with it, tearing the glass engineer to bits as most of the squad is too unconscious to help. With a single squad lacking some members, the state of the military is somewhat deplorable. Thankfully, Commander Bembul is a legendary fighter and trainer, and the migrants are plenty. Everyone claiming to be a peasant or grower is given a steel plate instead, because we have no farms and many, many things to decapitate. The Joyous orbs now count 7 recruits, 1 legendary commander, and two dudes out cold.

As I said, I've been browsing the relationship screen, and noticed two things. first, Bembul has a daughter named Kogsak, and second of all Kogsak, like basically every child born in Whisperwhip, has no husband, no friends and no children. This, I read on the wiki, is the result of having essentially zero breaks in all her existence. Apparently, people can't socialize unless they are off-duty, which happens rarely with zero idlers on average. In most forts this make little sense, but here i can easily picture it.

''Hey, nice rotting cheetah corpse, you are carrying.
-Thanks, I found it losing all of it's legs to the most recent deadly plague, while I was fleing from a 3-headed squirrel from hell.''

Awkward small talk is awkward. Still, it would be a real shame if all of those awesome family trees eventually vanished not because they died to a giant monster, but just because they failed to ever, ever spend two minutes making friends. Thus i decide that once we are done clearing the piles of corpse on our doorstep, I'll give some dwarves a bit of free time. Yes, people being friendless automatons helped with the traumatising events we went through, and yes eventually someone may eventually replace our awkward antisocial engineer as ''public figure'', but in the long run it'll be cool to have family lines perpetuating themselves. I tell the squads to only have 6 people training instead of 10, so they can have some time off. I also decide that, as the daughter of the Militiz commander, Kogsak was gonna be a badass in her own way. And no not by remaining one of our ten legendary bonecarvers.

Kogsak, I decide, will be known as Lady Grace, for she will be the one special dwarf who will learn to fire a bow. I give her the south-west barrack all to herself, the one with the old aborted shooting gallery. You may remember it as ''That one corridor i tried to turn into an assassin training ground'', which resulted in exactly all but one assassins being dead, and the survivor becoming a duke. Still, there is something to be done here, but I don't feel like understanding how archery ranges work. Instead, I order that one Bronze Colossus installed there, with a row of fortifications. Kogsak will waste all the bad arrows on it, since it won't feel the pain. Genius! High-level marksdwarf training with no maintenance, I'm so smart. In fact training against an invulnerable live target will be so efficient, Kogsak will be able to take half the months off so she can browse the dating scene.

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Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
With many migrants, it seems like a good time to grab all the crap lying outside. We'll need all the clothes we can get if we are to keep everyone satisfied and junk exposition-free. While this is going on, the masons work on improving the kitchen, while our miners and woodcutters are outside, preparing a massive expansion for the castle. Needless to say, I have the soldiers stationned outside at all time to prevent accidents. Another soldier bites the dust defending the fortress from a siege. At this point it's obvious that Ustuth and Immortal-D's squad, the True Handles, have a hard time covering the outside against giants and goblins, as well as the caverns all at once. It's about time the new recruits are tried and tested, and I know just the way.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Just to prove how badly we need a second squad ready to dish out the pain, a ranger goes to get some game in the caverns and come face to face with MAGA PABOVNAQUUZ, a giant hairy winged worm with a poisonous bite. ''Not sure i got enough bolts for that'' he declares while running upstairs. Once the beast has been carved to bits by the True Handles, I order both this squad and Bembul's Joyous Orbs stationned inside the fortress. At the same time, the elven merchants are here. Each squad is to cover one cage stockpile, while all the prisoners are marked for trade. As I learned in the past, when a hauler tries to move a caged goblin, it actually escapes. Because moving a cage containing a goblin and moving a caged goblin are two different things.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
About 50 goblins and half that many critters are freed by the civilians and massacred by the soldiers on that day. Much time is saved on cage-wiring and hauling that way. The only problem is that 1-civilians have to get right next to the freed prisoners, and 2-Sometimes the soldiers don't kill the goblins as fast as they are being freed. This leads to the death of recruit Lor (who is instantly replaced by another peasant), a burlesque scoobi-doo chase cross the halls of Whisperwhip, and about 5 injured dwarves, including two surgeons trying to get their patients out of there.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Of special mention is Manager Stukos. That guy is slowly becoming my favorite dwarf, to be fair. Sure, he locks himself in various construction project like twice a year, but he's always there to fix the major problems and do the dirty work. No wonder his son and grandson are such ballers. While most civilians respond to the goblin threat by running away and screaming, Manager Stukos instead chooses to stay there and punch them. He just open up cages and then proceed to strangle the occupants just because why not. He makes it out without a single scratch, despite fisticuffing a dozen goblins because he feels like it. I'm not sure if he's just bored, or trying to impress his grandson who'se job it actually is to kill the gioblins with a legendary candy axe, but the end result is that ol' Manager Stukos is now a novice Fighter and wrestler across the board thanks to this little adventure.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
After this experience, I declare the joyous Orb fit for duty, and they are stationed outside to protect the construction site, while the more experienced True Handles have to deal with things like dralthas, cave ogres, and the occasional Forgotten beast made of steam. Now, that's two of our squads being somewhat operational. What about the third one?

Well, as it turns out, Kogsak is having a hard time becoming an elf-person, mistress of the bow. Not because she's clumsy (altho her character sheet tells me she is) but mostly because Lady Grace is very, very dumb. I told her to grab some wooden arrows and station in front of the fortifications to shoot the Colossus. As soon as she reaches 3 or four squares in front of the fortifications, she declares her position to be ''close enough'' and stands there. She's not a rank 10 shooterydoobabe so she can't shoot across fortifications unless she is next to them. nor will she move next to them. Thus she doesn,t improve her shooting. telling her to actuall attack the Bronze Colossus 4 squares in front of her leaves Kogsak baffled, and she just runs away on break because she can't puzzle out  how to attack her target.

Normally, I would give up, but I really want to have a legendary bowdwarf (for no reason whatsoever). So I come up with a plan: I'll dig around the firing range, maybe 2 or three squares, so that ordering her to station there will leave her 2 or three squares behind, thus in front of the fortifications. Sounds easy enough, right? Well, except for the fact that the workers won't dig out the area because there's a colossus there and they are fucking pansies.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
So. New plan. If they can't dig around the place because they are scared, I'll carve a staircase from below, starting in the stone depot and ending next to the Colossus pen. digging the first two squares is ok, but then the workers can see the colossus through the fortification and panic. Then they flee. Picture this. I have to lock the barrack door otherwise people try to dig from there, meet the colossus and run away. Locking the door makes the miners go all the way around, from below, use the staircase and THEN they eventually get scared, so they run through the firing range toward the locked door, which I must unlock to let them out, which prompts the ten next miners to try and use that door, which scares them etc.

Now any sane person would realize just how pointless this endeavor is and just give up, but clearly this is not how I roll. Instead I have people take the stairs, dig another corridor left of the first one, and then tell them to dig the final square from there so they can't see the Bronze Colossus through the fortifications. It almost works, but team scary miners refuse to dig the very last patch of stone in front of the fortifications, leaving a very awkward corridor. I try to station Kogsak back and forth into the tunnels and after about 30 orders she finally stumbles upon the correct spot, and proceed to shoot her target! Except not, because she forgot to bring her crossbow. Then 30 orders later she realize she forgot her arrows. Then another 20 orders later she is tired.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
To put things in perspective, between the time I told Lady Grace to fire her fucking bow at a target to the point she did, the generator was activated and mined three times, it's content carved into blocks, said blocks used to finish an entirely new food complex, and part of a new exterior wall. Ten women moved to the fort, became pregnant and gave birth. Two forgotten beasts were carved into meat, as well as a cyclop. Two sieges were vanquished, dumped into lava, then their gear as well as every single item dropped by invaders in the last 5 years were claimed and stored/melted. A forest was chopped down, and the mountain atop which this forest grew was laboriously rzed.

Between the moment Kogsak received an order and successfully followed it, Duke Nukem Forever was anounced and then released.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Oh btw, that mysterious cow that got stamped into the porch like some years back by the bridge? We excavated. It was still alive. And enraged. the soldiers had to put it down. Let that sink in. The cow was atom-smashed into a concrete set of stairs, then came out four years later, alive and angry.
 ''Hey, let's dismantle this fully-compact structure of stone we built twenty-five years ago and...
 *MOOOOooooooOOOOOOoooooo!!!*''

*   *   *   *   *   *   *   *

Anyway, our first guest of honor was a simple strand extractor, and he has been living in the fort for quite some time. Let us now introduce our second guess, shall we?

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Right off the bat, when I look at his skills, I know Edzul is no ordinary dwarf. He has the charisma and social skills to be elected mayor right here right now. He is also very skilled in many, many random activities, as well as a fine warrior. He's apparently incredibly tough and very strong.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
When questioned about his combat experience, Edzul informs me that he's slaughtered various animal and animal people, in a place called the Prairie of Worth, an area famous for being the first time I ever hear about it. The groups and societies he claim to have been part of are also new and obscure to me. Most of the dwarves in Whisperwhip come from various settlements of the Citadel of Clutches. They belong to a church caled the Cult of Bronze, and all their fights come from fighting elves in the Dune of Dignity.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Edzul travels alone. He has no family, no friends, and strangely enough to worshipped deities. One of the secret reasons I've been browsing relationships and profiles, appart from seeing strings of cousins and pages upon pages of dabbling farmer skills, was to spot specific dwarves. The first one is Cog Floorquest, queen and necromancer. The second is Princess Kunil, her daughter: heir to the throne and, interestingly enough, cursed vampire. now I,m fairly certain Edzul isn't lying about not being a dude, so Kunil is out of the way. But that's the second weirdest person to ever move to this fort (mostly because you can't top a giant giraffe from hell pretending to be a rotting human girl pretending to be the goddess of death and murder pretending to be a bureaucrat). Is Edzul a vampire? Probably.

I have Bembul keep a close eye on him. To isolate the new migrant and keep tabs on him, I designate one of the rooms in HAVEN as Edzul's. There we'll be able to check if he eats, drinks, and I guess murders. He seems rather happy, and never indicates anything about good meals and decadent drinks. edzul's only two thoughs are about admiring a piece of furniture and... receiving water lately? I'm not too sure why that would be, especially since I've been zoomed on him every second ever since he moved to the fortress, and he never received water (nor had any reason for this to happen).

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Edzul also claims to look like someone who is 144 years old. Which is... strange, since it's the year 140 on the calendar. Apparently he's the first of his kind. That could explain a lot, but since the only ''first dwarf'' I know of is Cog Floorquest and she's a MIA necromancer queen, I'm still wary of them as a whole. I eventually stop watching Edzul closely because ''stuff happens'' momentarily after, and as such, I cannot tell if he is a dangerous vampire, or a strange, sad dwarf. I've been thinking a lot about his case before writing this, however. If truly he is one of the first of his kind, it's very possible that he never got married because there wasn't anyone of his age to wed. That would explain the lack of family. Friends only seem to include people in the fortress, so maybe Edzul had tons of friends before he moved here. Finally, the food in HAVEN so far consists of a giant chunk of 200 forgotten meat, and save for Bembul (who is very busy) all the new brewers are dabbling or novice. The booze moved to HAVEN is most likely from the newest batches, and the meat is uncooked. If Edzul truly spent his stay here living in HAVEN, then it's possible none of the food he consumed or drank provided any thoughts. That's farfetched, but not impossible. Still doesn,t explain why he immediately ''received water'' upon his arrival, but let's ignore that.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
So, maybe Edzul isn't a vampire. Maybe he's the oldest dwarf ever, who moved from another civilisation to come here, in this cursed place, a few years before his last breath. He never worshipped a god, he never knew love, and for reasons untold he abandonned everything he knew to come here. Despite high social skills, his kills and skillset suggest a dwarf who spent most of his life alone, tending animals, foraging and growing his own crops, as well as making his own rudimentary clothes. All of the things he killed, he seems to be wearing a piece of as jewelry. What happened to your civilisation, Edzul, and why did you forsake it? Why have you been living so many years as a reclusive hermit, only to move in this cursed place at the end of your days? How does one feel after spending what accounts for one's race entire history alone, while every other dwarf mated and raised a family?

Whenever I take a look at him, and follow his actions, Edzul visits the crypts, or the temple of Kadol. He stays there for hours, until someone else appears, at which point he immediately turn around and sneaks away. I've seen a lot of shit in this fortress, and I know the survivors have endured much, yet looking at Edzul makes me think he too, carries a tragic past. The more I reflect upon him and his untold story, the sadder I get. I almost wish he was a vampire. Then the solution would be simple. Alas, I fear there is no cure for what afflicts Edzul's lonely soul.

*   *   *   *   *   *   *  *

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
As the strangest and newest guest of Whisperwhip wanders the crypts, the rest of the fortress has been improving the colossus pen. Someone dug from the staircase through the sand wall, freeing the beast, only to trap it in a new cage trap. The useless areas are blocked, and the pen is made entirely out of fortifications, and a 1-large corridor goes all the way around. by stationing Lady Grace anywhere in this corridor, she ends her move next to the fortifications and empties her quiver. At first she uses palm arrows, but with the next quiver she starts shooting silver arrows, despite my strict orders. Idiot, you'll kill our target dummy if you fracture it like that too much. I take Kogsak off the case for a few moments, hoping she'll grab the right arrows when she returns. Around the same time, our newest strand extractor enters a fey mood, and start collecting items. I complain about his choice of workshop, cursing myself for not training him minimally in armoring or weaponsmithing, and then forget about him. there's a lot of artefacts I'm not linking, because who cares about wood scepters at this point. Despite training about 20 novice armorers, all the new strange moods come from children and unskilled dwarves.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
I'm not too sure how much pain a colossus can endure before it breaks, so before I send Kogsak in I come up with the greatest plan of all. Like, it almost feels like cheating the game. First I'll craft ten thousand wooden bolts, and assign ten dwarves to a squad with nothing but wooden bolts and a crossbow. They'll level up fairly quickly, at which point they'll be replaced with new dwarves. the legendary marksdwarves will be allowed to ''hunt'' which I assume means they'll carry a crossbow around. In time, all the civilians will be trained killers able to defend themselves or man the walls if needed. It's not a problem if they're all hunters, I'll dispatch soldiers to kill monsters anyway, and if i forget about ten civlians with hawkeye training will gank a elk bird, which shouldn't cause any complications. clearly, I,ve stumbled upon a golden mine.

I immediately draft the first ten dwarves, and create the Earthen Wares. this squad includes the oldest dwarves, so I'm essentially raining our doctors and nobles as snipers. Shortcomings of this master plan peek their head when i notice that the earthen Wares have no bolts, because the manager is not approving anything because he's in the firing range having no bolts. I queue about ten stacks in each and every craftdwarf workshop. That's when I notice that our Strand extractor is still there, apparently not producing anything. He needs raw clear glass, which I know for a fact is a pain in the ass to make. I immediately queue up a bunch of every possible component (Ash, charcoal, lye?) and then remember that, hey, Manager Stukos is not managing anything right now. I visit the various workshops, and queue up stuff, hoping things will be done. I'm sort of busy juggling the shooting range setup, and following Edzul to pierce his secret.

Naturally, that's when our third special guest shows up.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Enter Prince Mistem, brother to the late Lady Asmel, and youngest son of the royal family. He shows up with his wife, and probably is bumped about discovering his daughter was eaten by a giant bird since her last letter. Regardless, Prince Mistem is of royal blood, and the highest honor this fortress has been graced with (Unless you count I guess Quula?), so naturally I give him one of the noble bedrooms, and greet him welcome. By which I mean ''every member of the nobility is hidden in a sandy tunnel and shooting a magical statue with palm bolts and pay no attention to him whatsoever''. A caravan from the colonies arrive alongside His Grace, which bring the promise of simply purchasing raw clear glass straight off.

Modesty hasn't been replaced yet, so it seems fitting to offer this noble job to Prince Mistem. He is of high birth, surely he will appreciate this position, I tell myself, oblivious to the fact that the three other members of the royal family I've heard about include a dark magic user, a bloodsucker, and a bloodthirsty mass-murderer. I tell the prince to visit the depot hastily, to which he replies by grabbing a crossbow and running into the caverns to shoot an ogre in the fucking face. did i mention he isn't allowed to hunt? cause he isn't. but hey, he,s a prince so i guess nobody orders him around. Dangerous murderers in the royal family, 4/4 so far.

So trading is out of the way for the raw clear glass, and I can't queue things via Manager Stukos for the moment. At least we have about 45 idlers right now, so someone will... wait why is nobody idle anymore, what are they all...

WHAT THE SHIT.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Ok, so. Someone went to shoot the bronze colossus, and along the way they decided to drop their dirty used socks, as soldiers often do. Then someone said, I'll pick that up. The hauler presumably grabbed a bin, moved toward the socks, then noticed there was a bronze colossus at the end of the corridor, and dropped everything. To which someone said ''a forgotten beast biscuit on the floor? Not on my watch.'' Then people tried to grab random crossbows, and clothes, and barrels. Obviously I forbid everything and assumed this will solve the problem. But people want what's inside the box, or seek to move the content in new, unforbidden boxes. Naturally they grab other bins and move toward the corridor, and discard the whole thing. I left the fort alone for about 10 minutes so I could check on our guest of honor, and during that brief moment people managed to forsake any semblance of productivity, and moved basically two thirds of our important bins in a corridor where they refuse to retrieve them.

Ok, this is officially stupid. Not only is this bad beyond relief, but I need people to actually create raw clear glass instead of doing back and forth in this stupid corridor. Also I forgot potash. Shit. Cancel the charcoal people, and also stop turning all the ash into lye... (Disclaimer I'm not an expert at dwarf fortress industry yet).to get anything done, I visit the forty bins and barrels, forbid them, then forbid everything inside each of them, then all the rotting junk on the floor, then the doors, then the people looking at the doors, then the peoplewho know these people.

Nobody. Goes. There. Anymore.

It looks like I'll have to deconstruct the walls and capture the bronze colossus again if I want to retrieve basically every tool and weapon we possess. I disband the Earthen Wares for now as, obviously, the bronze colossus pen will need some intense tweaks before it can be used again. I install traps in a chokepoint, then send a mason to let the monster free.

* Urist cancels deconstruct building: Interrupted by Bronze Colossus.*

That's when I realise what I've done. the first time around we let the Bronze colossus loose by digging a random wall. Now we can't approach the pen because all the walls are actually fortifications. nobody will go close enough to do the work, so I can't even unsuspend the job repeatedly like I'd do with a flooding structure. The solution, of course, is to dispatch the True Handles and let them gun the Bronze colossus down. Only steel bolts will truly affect the monster, and as Kogsak illustrated previously, soldiers don,t give two shits about which ammunition type i want them to carry. I order a thousand steel bolts to be made just in case, so the soldiers should be using those by i guess next year.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Before the soldiers can do any of this, they must address the fact that two forgotten beasts just moved to Whisperwhip. I check their location, and observe that they seem unable to cause any trouble, so we should...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
...False alarm! Here's a third one, a giant humanoid made of coke, and it shoots web. for an extra dose of !!FUN!!, our newest friend Daz spawned about 5 squares from a mechanic fixing the dragon-possibly-maybe cages. A very close chase begins; if the mecanic runs in a straight line for too long, he'll get webbed and die in seconds. He eventually turns a corner and run toward the adamantine quarry, while Daz decides to take a different route and head straight toward the entrance of the fortress.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Before I can raise the bridge or trigger the trap, Daz has webbed most of our animals, lunched on a war lion, and is rushing inside the base. The True Handles are running downstairs, trying to intercept the monster. They meet the beast, who decides to simply... web the squad and keep moving toward the base. I don,t want to do this. they are not ready... yet i have to.

I dispatch the Joyous Orbs, hoping to delay the beast. Nobody is sealing the fortress, because everyone is still trying to find reasons to do back in forths toward the Colossus. Daz the coke monster must be killed, no matter what the cost.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
That's when I realize where the beast is heading. It is bypassing the army, yes, but Daz isn't heading upstairs. It is rushing even further down, deeper into the earth. He's going to HAVEN. And there's only one person there. Edzul the strange hermit, living on his own away from every other dwarf, even amidst a fortress of 174. In a strange twist of fate, Edzul's incredible nature, and the doubts he seeded in my mind, just saved the fortress. Had he not been so suspicious, there would have been nobody in HAVEN. Not during the clusterfuck that is happening upstairs. I lock every door along the way, giving the army enough time to catch up and attack the beast. This floor, like the seven before it, get instantly filled with webs.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
It seems the time they spent trying to poke the bronze colossus has paid off, because the True Handles are now relatively competent with a ranged weapon. You may remember the old squads as very fucking good sharpshooters, but that's because they spent decades on the walls dealing with sieges. The True Handles are few, and the product of dire times, so they've had little to no practice with a crossbow, having to meet each foe on the field as fast as possible. Recently, however, most of them attained level 6-7, with their leader Ustuth being recently promoted to professional marksdwarf, able to shoot through fortifications at a distance. As Daz the coke monster pounces on the nearest soldier, all his quadmates take out their crossbow and pelt the beast with heavy bolts, enough to give the beast pause. The beast is massive and quite impervious to damage, but the repeated volleys are sufficient to destabilise it and counter its attacks. Support fire and the timely arrival of a wardog gangbang give one of the squadmates enough time to escape from the webs. This dwarf is, obviously, Immortal-D.


Spoiler (click to show/hide)
As the beast is busy dealing ith dogs and webbing them, Immortal-D dodges out of the attack, and dashes into the doorway, unnocupied by sticky webs. From there he proceeds to bash the monster, slowly but surely cutting off various limbs with his legendary axe, one by one.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The beast tries to follow, and Immortal-D maneouvers swiftly around it. Cokefiend and Dwarf both are locked in a duel, in the middle of the fanciest and least used dinning room on the continent, while dogs and friends can only watch from the next room. A daring dance begins... Immortal-d dodges every web, blocks every blow, and still, the creature refuses to die, even as its limbs are severed.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
''Hey guys we finally made it!'' says a young recruit from Bembul's squad, punching the beast in the face from behind and sending the skull flying. Killsteal much? Immortal-D doesn't care, as he's already racked up over fourty kills since he joined the army two years ago. He knows he fought well, and he also knows another legendary kill awaits him upstairs. The fort is still in trouble, hostage to a foe scarier than any forgotten beast: their own ineptitude.

Immortal-D and friends station themselves near the colossus pen, emptying quiver after quiver. Naturally the dwarves will not carry the types of ammunition I tell them to, instead grabbing the closest quiver they can find. Hey, remember when I set every workshop in the fortress to churn out wooden bolts, and then manager stukos validated the orders because he was off duty and we made like a thousand more? Well turns out the bronze colossus isn't going down anytime soon. The use of steel bolt is a miracle rather than a common appearance, so I'm starting to realize bolts are not going to kill this beast. Remember when i was afraid that Kogsak would murder the beast is she emptied a quiver full of silver arrows? Well, I stand corrected.

Everyone move outside. I station the soldiers above the colossus pen, which is just one floor below the outside ground thanks to previously removing the mountain that was there. I dig a stair down, certain that it will solve the problem and allow the soldiers to descent into the pen. The way I understand it, (and boy am I about to stand corrected once more) is that stairs down don,t have to be linked to stairs up to work, that just makes them one-way. That's why the staircase on one level is diagonal to the floor below, and people somehow still manage to navigate the thing just fine. Turns out there's something I'm missing, because the soldiers won't go downstairs. Or maybe their ability to pathfind during station orders don't register such one-way stairs. Or maybe, just fucking maybe, the pen is 4 large, so telling them to move anywhere in it makes the soldiers think ''Hey I'm 3 squares away from there, guess this position is fine''. From Kogsak's first issues with the colossus to this giant inflated mess, the problem has come full circle.

The half-stairs I dug can,t be connected to a down stairs, because every square but one inside the pen is a patch of sand replaced by block flooring, which we can't exaclt reach and deconstruct. So i build a stairway above the only untouched spot, by which I mean ''accidentally channel it instead'', so I must build it from scratch, which gets interrupted because there's a hole now and people are scared of the colossus below. Ten thousand unsuspend orders later, we finally have the first part of a staircase under which we can build a connecting uppper staircase and finally let them soldiers move there on their own and kill that thing.

Funny thing about 50-foot tall building destroyers: it's actually pretty hard to slowly build things next to them? The second I try to unsuspend the second part of the staircase and notice it is simply gone, I realize the obvious flaw in my plan. We have been spending months on this nonsence, at this point. The guy i was trying to save from a mood is long dead by now, but I can't just forbid the whole area and leave the colossus there, because all our weapons and tools are in the corridor and we ain't abandonning that shit.

As our masons are busy building a giant skybridge from the top of the food tower which I plan to just drop on the thing and hope it takes care of the problem, I have a stroke of wisdom, and remember that if i collapse the Colossus Room, then that will also destroy the room underneath. I send the masons in the stone depot to replace the stockpile area by a massive stack of stone blocks, to withstand the collision. Then I have an epiphany.

''I could have just built a staircase up''!

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
So after three seasons of total confusion, convoluted plans, total fortress paralysis, a close call with Dan the coke monster, and thousands of wasted bolts, the masons build a staircase in exactly ten seconds. Immortal-d eagerly cleaves the beast bit by bit, and create a goblin statue. Then he climbs the staircase, jump in the pen, and demolish the fortifications himself.  Everything is unforbidden, the haulers retrieve the entire inventory of the fortress and store it properly, and life returns to normal in Whisperwhip. I think I owe you an apology, Kogsak, because frankly, I'm no smarter than you...

The morale of this story is, using a bow leads to societal collapse.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2015, 06:33:02 pm by Taupe »
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FallacyofUrist

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  • Blatant furry. Also a hypnotist.
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Re: Whisperwhip: a megabeast steakhouse
« Reply #178 on: July 13, 2015, 09:39:49 pm »

NO! Aristotle!
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I'm giving out free hypnosis sessions on Discord. DM for details! I'm always looking for talented and/or bizarre subjects! You'll never know how talented you are until you try!

On another note, Standoff is a game I'm running. Ever want to kill someone with your very own Stand? You've come to the right place.

Taupe

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Re: Whisperwhip: a megabeast steakhouse
« Reply #179 on: July 13, 2015, 10:05:01 pm »

NO! Aristotle!
I am so, so sorry. Your dwarf courageously tanked a forgotten beast for his team, but they all fell unconscious. Once the fight was over, Aristotle too was unconscious, so nobody could take him to the hospital before he bled to death... He died doing what he loved, which I'm assuming was wrestling nightmarish african mammals.
« Last Edit: July 13, 2015, 10:06:40 pm by Taupe »
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