Fallout is Dragons

GES New Dawn
Session 17

DJ Smack Talk’s Broadcast

“Hey, everypony! DJ Smack Talk here, and it’s time for some news!

Skyfall continues to be a hotbed for all the weird and dangerous crap in the Maw. Just yesterday, the whole city nearly blew up with its own payload. Word is that the ponies who made the ship were complete dickbags and had a failsafe for in case us normal surface ponies ever tried to get ’er running. Lucky for them that the Dragon Mawlers were there to save the day. I think that serves as a reminder to everypony out there – stay vigilant, stay watchful. You never know if you might be sitting on a nuke waiting to go off."

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Runaway Steel
Session 16

DJ Smack Talk’s Broadcast

“Hey, everypony. DJ Smack Talk, here, uh… Kind of a slow news day. Nothing much really happened after word of Smaug’s defeat went out, other than the usual, ‘Hey, we’re still alive and making progress!’ celebrations went around. But I guess that’s fine; you should always take a break after slaying a dragon. As for the Dragon Mawlers, I heard that they had some trouble with Tempered Steel… running away or something? That can’t be right. Why would Tempered Steel just run away like that? But either way I heard he got back, so I guess all’s well that ends well. Oh, and now the Dragon Mawlers have a new medic, by the name of… Dr. Tibbs? Fractured Tibia? What’s a Tibia, even? Is that even a thing? Apologies for the lack of enthusiasm today, listeners, uh… Just some personal stuff I’m dealing with, is all. Let’s get back to the tunes before today’s broadcast becomes even MORE of a trainwreck, shall we?”

Now, of course, what DJ Smack Talk’s broadcast doesn’t cover is that
Previously, in Dragon’s Maw,
the group was called down to the inner workings of the ship known as Skyfall to see if they could help figure out how to unlock its dormant functions. While the town was able to get its magical shield up and running through extensive jury-rigging, all of the other functions were locked past a central mainframe they couldn’t access. Three passwords and a DNA lock stand in the way of total access. One password, the Skyfall engineers have already managed to hack. And at the end of the session, the DNA lock accepted Flotsam’s DNA signature.

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Attack on Smaug
Session 15

DJ Smack Talk’s Broadcast

“Hey, everypony! It’s DJ Smack Talk again. On the air for our third day running, and it’s still as magical as ever. Anyway, time for some news.
Now I know what you all want to hear. You wanna hear of the story of Skyfall, the Dragon Mawlers, and one giant literally bloody dragon by the name of Smaug. Well, the facts are in. The Dragon Mawlers kicked some major butt! Smaug is dead, Skyfall is still in one piece, and that’s three out of seven curses that are GONE from the Maw! Oh, and I guess some other guys called the Black Lotus Prospectors helped too, since they drew Smaug out of his cave and such, but really, we know who the real heroes are. Keep rockin’ it, Dragon Mawlers! Oh, and to Firelight, who I’ve heard is leaving to help play doctor to the ponies of Skyfall, I gotta say – you’re one heck of an awesome pony. You’re gonna be hard to replace.
Not much else in the way of news, cuz I mean really, how are you gonna top that. So let’s get back to the tunes!”

(After this session, AK Codeman (Firelight’s player) had to leave the game for the summer.)

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Stalker's Camp
Session 14.5

Excerpt from Stories of the Maw: Xencarn’s Great Escape

The Dragon Mawlers party met Stalker, a slaver gang leader with a drawl suspiciously similar to Powder Keg’s, who was working in the Maw and specifically targeting ex-raiders. He met them in Skyfall to deliver a message, paraphrased: “To Burner and Brass Knuckles, if you’re considering attacking me, you should be aware that I have people very close to you at my camp. I am, however, open to bargain for their release, if you’re interested.”

After Stalker left, their medic Firelight left the room in a huff, and the zebra necromancer Xencarn followed. Firelight was privately very disturbed by Stalker’s message. Xencarn suggested that they go off to Stalker’s camp to investigate the truth of things. Firelight accepted, and the two of them went on ahead.

At the camp, Firelight and Xencarn were welcomed as business customers, albeit customers kept under heavily armed watch. Stalker introduced first introduced them to Trigger, a blind pony from Firelight’s past, previously assumed dead. He then showed them Copper Wire, a minotaur mercenary in Stalker’s employ who seemed to be Brass Knuckles’ (ostensibly Tempered Steel’s) brother.

Stalker explained that it would cost them 5,000 caps each, both to free Trigger from his slavery and to provide severance pay for the mercenary Copper Wire, for a total of 10,000 caps. Riches that neither Firelight nor Xencarn had available, nor did the rest of the Dragon Mawlers.

Just as Firelight and Xencarn had decided to leave and come back with either the caps or a new plan, Stalker got a call on his radio, presumably from the Executive. Stalker then informed the group that the price was reduced to 3,500 caps each, for a total of 7,000. In exchange, Firelight would have to stay at the camp until the transaction was completed.
Xencarn offered himself up as trade, to stay at the camp and let Firelight get the payment instead. Stalker agreed to this, saying that he could use a necromancer around the camp in the meantime. Firelight objected at first, but Xencarn insisted that Firelight was more useful to the party than he was, especially if they ended up taking on a dragon to earn enough loot for the ransom.

Firelight eventually relented, but insisted on trying to heal Trigger’s wounds before he left. At this point, Firelight had become a miracle worker when it came to magical medicine. Between some healing potions, a doctor’s bag, Firelight’s innate healing talent, and a great deal of luck, Firelight was able to restore Trigger’s sight. Amidst Trigger’s teary-eyed gratitude, Firelight was then escorted out of the camp.

Xencarn was then put in one of the slave cages and told to wait for instructions.

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Skyfall
Session 14

DJ Smack Talk’s Broadcast

“Hey, everypony! DJ Smack Talk here again. Just wanna say thanks for all the calls you’ve been sending in, all the kind words of support. And the threats, too, actually. Makes us feel like a legitimate Wasteland radio, ha! Anyway, time for some news!
Time for your favorite segment: Where are the Dragon Mawlers now? Well, last I heard, they were just exiting Skyfall. See, they got wind of the slaver gang run by a unicorn named Stalker. Now this ain’t your average slaver gang. It’s super-well funded, probably by The Executive – yeah, I know you’re listening you fat sack of… anyway – and get this, Stalker’s gang only goes after ex-raiders. Yeah. If you’re lookin’ to get out of the Four Horses business, and frankly with the Raider-Killer on the loose why wouldn’t you, then you better watch out that you don’t get picked up by slavers. Youch. Hopefully our local dragon-slayers are on their way to deal with that right now. More as that develops.
Some other headlines for you ponies (and other) out there:
A source in Gold Rush tells me that the town’s officially planning to expand with more homes, due to a wave of new Outcasts. All thanks to the Dragon Mawlers, of course.
In the town of Ribcage, after like three months of being banned, the Cult of Tiamat is finally allowed to preach their gospel within its walls again. Huh, wonder what changed.
And finally in Skyfall, the town’s all abuzz because… heh, abuzz becuz, ha, classic… uh, right, the Black Lotus Prospectors are making another run on a dragon. I’ve been asked not to share the details so that no one tries to poach ‘em, but screw it. Hey, Dragon Mawlers! The Black Lotus guys are headed for the Blood dragon! If you’re anywhere near that area, now’s the time to go for it!
Whew! Man, all that news was exhausting. Back to the music. I’m just gonna select a record at random and just play it, see how that goes…”

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Radio Crackle Tower
Session 13

Previously, in Dragon’s Maw…

The party left Slayer Base, found out Aurelia had stolen a Plasma Caster for herself, encountered a proxy of Death again, found Radio Crackle Tower, removed the ghouls and faulty defenses defending the place, found a group of defected raiders and chose not to kill them, opened up the vast vault-like entrance to the recording studio, listened to the last words of Gamble, Radio Crackle’s former DJ, got Smack Talk to earn his Cutie Mark by listening to a song by The Ink Spots, decided to bring the radio station back online, and brokered a deal with the Steel Rangers to keep the place stocked and protected.

(Basically, a lot happened, and this is the extremely condensed version.)

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Slayer Base
Session 12

Previously, in Dragon’s Maw…

The party was taken in to Slayer Base as captive Wasteland Assets, forced to wait while the Steel Rangers deliberated over them and cataloged all the loot they’d found. As luck would have it, this would end up taking a while, because the current Elder of the base, one Stainless Steel, was recently dead. The Head Paladin and second-in-command, Razor Apple, was investigating the death and blocking any bureaucratic motion to elect a new Elder. The situation was revealed to be a cold war between the loyal Steel Rangers and a number of Applejack’s Rangers sympathizers and undercover agents. A Star Paladin visiting the base, a unicorn named Lilypad, agreed to let the party help in the investigation in order to bring about a swift conclusion. They learned that the Elder had really died months ago to the Raider known as War, but the Zombie Curse had been keeping him alive all this time. They also learned that Razor Apple pretty much knew this, but since the autopsy information was classified, he was using it as an excuse to go on a crusade against suspected Applejack’s Rangers. The party convinced Paladin Torque, a muscly earth pony obsessed awesomeness and explosions, to take Razor Apple head-on and reveal the autopsy details to the entire base. After a day’s worth of arguing, Razor Apple was suspended from his duties, and the base was free to elect a new Elder. At the party’s insistence, Lilypad helped sway public opinion towards Moonlight, an undercover Applejack’s Ranger, to be the new Elder. Moonlight immediately signed off the party as Wasteland Assets, and they were free to come and go as they pleased. As they prepared to leave, one of the scribes, a shy pony by the name of Gem, mentioned an abandoned radio tower to the south.

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The Lost Session
Session 11

(The audio file for this session was lost. Thankfully, it’s the only lost session so far.)

Recap by Great Dinn

The party opens following Powder Keg’s date with Blinkie, the whole party staying up and generally chatting with one another while they wait for the raider killer with an explosive temper to get back from his night of romance(?). Despite harassment from the remainder of the party, and innocent sounding questions from Flotsam, the party gets no information on how the date went, other than “it was good.” The party acquiesces to Powder’s wish to not go into further detail, and goes to sleep, except for Flotsam who stays up an hour later than usual, finishing up the note she was working on for the Steel Rangers, and Firelight, who looks over the note and tucks it under the filly when she finally falls asleep.

The party wakes up and continues on their path to Slayer Base, each preparing in their own way for the oncoming encounter with the Steel Rangers, and everyone joining in on the general harassment of Powder Keg for the date, and his reaction to it. Our heroes also encounter Silver Wrench, an engineer travelling from Skyfall to Gold Rush. The party asks him about his reason for travelling, and he responds vaguely, stating that there was some “thing” found in Skyfall that he wanted to discuss with Nail. He was, regrettably, tight-lipped about anything specific, but he did recognize the reputation the group had begun to garner. Silver Wrench bids them farewell, and the party continues on. Before things get too relaxed, however, the party runs into a raider encampment. Powder Keg, naturally, decides to start a fight.

Well, fighting gives a little more credit to the Raiders than deserved. It was more ambushing and slaughtering them through the use of “bombies,” landmines (making use of Flotsam’s special Sparkle Cola Explosives), and a blinding by Firelight with fireworks. All the raiders who managed to survive those particular encounters were quickly torn apart by the rest of the party’s typical attacks, and as always, more explosives.Those few raiders fight back more readily than usual, the members of the Four Horses gang making use of various abilities and techniques that seem more advanced than previous encounters, but no less capable of being dealt with. By the end of the “fight”, one Raider per leader is left alive, and Tempered Steel sends them running, each with a message for their boss.

The group explores the Raider encampment, scouring the tents and buildings for supplies, stopping only when they encounter a colt locked up in a cell. They attempt to talk with him, but find that he’s had his tongue cut out, presumably by the Raiders. Tempered Steel and Firelight destroy the cell door and let the pony out, while Powder Keg preps some “Hydra” for the colt in an effort to heal his tongue. The attempt is, fortunately, successful, and the colt thanks them for their help. He then asks if they know where his mother might be, and it’s revealed that the nameless colt is the son of a Raider. While it’s uncertain, it seems likely that the Famine pony who ran off with the message was his mother, but he’s willing to travel with the party for a little while, and “join their gang” so to speak. He reveals some of his history, how he lost his tongue (calling Famine something horribly creative), and Tempered Steel suggests “Smack Talk” as a name for the colt, which he readily accepts. Powder Keg locates the largest of the tents, spreads it out in front of one of the buildings, writes “This is the fate of all Raiders” in blood, and blows the building sky high as a message to send a message, then the group begins their journey back to Slayer Base, with one more new pony in tow.

Because no session is complete without an argument of some kind, the party quickly tries to teach the son of a Raider ethics and morality as they walk, which proves to be an arduous task as the group is distinctly lacking in proper role models, and Smack Talk, while admiring some aspects of his new “gang” is still a teenager, and does not so readily accept the perceived “Lessons” from the somewhat hypocritical adults around him. Javolt proves to be both good with, and horrible with children at the exact same time, and Powder Keg, in an effort to keep the kid occupied and also potentially to relate to the colt on some level so he’ll shut up and listen when the inevitable alignment talk returns, attempts to teach Smack Talk about explosives. Smack Talk accepts, mostly because he wants to get away from Javolt.

Before too much more can occur, the party spies a small group of Tiamat Cultists heading down the same path they’re on, travelling in the opposite direction. There’s a small moment of panic, with Firelight attempting to help Aurelia come up with some advice to give the cultists should they go through the whole “begging, pleading, asking for guidance” shtick, but it fortunately does not come up. The two groups pass each other without much fanfare, only a sordid glare coming from a few of the cultists as the groups get further away. Powder Keg calls back to them to inform them that they’re idiots, which results in a scolding from the rest of the party sans Smack Talk, who heartily approves of calling anyone out, but the cultists don’t do much in response.

Flotsam brings up Smack Talk’s lack of cutie mark in the ensuing continuation of the aforementioned alignment argument, which results in Smack Talk asking how the party members who have them got theirs. Smack Talk, as he states, is fairly certain that he’ll get his cutie mark for killing so he’s curious as to who they murdered. Flotsam goes on a long tangent of potential cutie marks that Smack Talk could end up with that don’t come from killing, as if to dissuade him from a Raiding lifestyle, but Firelight points out that indeed, both Flotsam and Powder Keg got their cutie marks from events that involved killing, and that it’s a bit hypocritical of them to say otherwise, though quickly adding in that it totally doesn’t have to be that way for Smack Talk. However, they in turn prod Firelight until he informs them that he got his after killing some ponies as well. They attempt to press him for more information, especially given his reticence to talk about his past, but the efforts bear no fruit. Even Xencarn’s calming talk with him away from the party fails to dredge up more than that he’s sorry, he didn’t know who they were, and he regrets having done it. He does say they’ll talk about it later, when fewer ponies are around, though.

Before anything else can be pulled from the well of characterization, a pony in a black hood is spotted walking towards the group, away from the perceived location of Slayer Base. The pony happens to match the description given by Smack Talk of the gang leader Death. The groups have various internal freak outs of appropriate levels, Flotsam with a fear of what’s become of Slayer base, Powder and his general Raider Hatred, Smack Talk with his admiration, etc. Before the group can really make a well thought out decision about what to do, however, Xencarn approaches the hooded pony and asks if he’s Death.

What follows is a very calm, and well-mannered discussion of what Death is doing there, how Xencarn can improve his necromancy, how much the Four Horses Gang knows of the Dragon Mawlers, how the two groups can work together or against each other in relation to Mr. E, and the revelation that the body they’re talking to is nothing more than an illusion of sorts. He assures Flotsam that he’s directly done nothing to Slayer base, and that he was just checking up on things, before leaving the party to their own devices, easily ignoring Powder Keg’s numerous threats against family and loved ones.

Once Death has made his way out of sight, the party quickens their pace towards Slayer base, stopping only when they encounter the secret Steel Ranger base marked on the map given to the party by Sarge as classified. The group decides to approach it, and attempt to enter it. The only visible entrance is a door with a small box, marked with the letters M.A.S. Flotsam pushes the button, and makes an attempt to open the door using the codes given to her by Trip and Sarge, but they prove ineffective. Unhampered, the party discusses potential options for a code, trying multiple things before realizing that the key to the code was within the last Ministry of Arcane Sciences building they were in. Tempered Steel brings out the 300-word manifesto that he totally didn’t leave back in Gold Rush (Xencarn used some magic to draw from the magic space like unto a Minecraft Ender Chest), and the group make use of it, and the numbered code with it, to determine the password.

The numbers: 106, 141, 9, 185, 195, 140, 102, 86, 97, 148, 134, 18, 13, 54, 69, 61, 83, 1

The code: Recall the most important lesson. Know you’re not alone. Realize you have friends. Remember that Friendship is Magic.

Flotsam says the code into the box.

A few seconds later, an iron clanking and rumbling can be heard and felt, and the door to the base opens. The group enters and explores, finding a trove of advanced Steel Ranger technology, and all sorts of loot that the party could most certainly take advantage of, even if not at the moment.

Unfortunately, before they can even properly explore the entirety of the secret base, a voice from behind them tells them to freeze, and drop their weapons. A platoon of Steel Rangers stands at the ready, poised to strike the group however necessary. “Keep your hooves, wings, and horns where we can see them!”

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The Dragon Wasteland
Session 10

Previously, in Dragon’s Maw…

The party departed from Gold Rush and traveled south along the road, armed with passcodes from both Sarge and Trip for dealing with Slayer Base, home of the Steel Rangers in the Maw. They stopped at the Dine ‘n’ Dash Trading Post to buy supplies and get some food. At that time, Powder Keg met a pony named Blinkie who worked there, and inexplicably became attracted to her calm, blunt personality. While they were waiting, they heard about the Forever Sleep Clinic nearby, and heard about how nopony who’d ever investigated ever came back. The party decided checking it out would be a great idea. The clinic was filled with a toxin and inhabited by some kind of blind, semi-psychic, radioactive entity wielding medical knives as weapons. The party dealt with it by blowing up a good half of the building, and sending in another bomb-zombie to finish the job. Afterwards, they raided the building, and discovered some supplies, a stamp for Blinkie’s collection, and just two shell-shocked survivors. They returned to the Dine ‘n’ Dash to deliver the good news, along with sending the survivors on their way and giving the stamp to Blinkie. Blinkie was impressed enough to go on a date with Powder Keg that evening, while the rest of the party continued south to Shiny’s Rest Stop – a ruined rest area that nonetheless seemed to be a decent and often-used shelter for wastelanders. The party made camp there and got their rest.

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Therapy in Gold Rush
Session 9

Previously, in Dragon’s Maw…

Once the party was back in Gold Rush, they took a bit of a break to restock, rest, and plan their next move. Aurelia, worried about the party’s mental health after what they’d all experienced with Nidhogg, used up almost her entire hoard of caps to buy them a session with Sharper, the town’s group therapist. Several of the group’s interpersonal problems were at least addressed, and some uncomfortable questions were asked, along with some strange hypotheticals. The party left more or less satisfied, though everyone knew that they were far from getting along perfectly, but all were agreed that there was at least progress. After that, the party made a general plan to travel to the southwest towards Slayer Base, a Steel Ranger outpost, on their way to Skyfall and the next dragon’s territory. They asked Sarge for help and advice, who reluctantly agreed to give them a passcode into the base – at least, once everyone in Gold Rush was done celebrating the passing of two dragons. The party waited until the right moment to head out into the wasteland.

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