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3, 4, 5, test test. Can you hear me? Well, don't answer, because I can't hear you. This is your benevolent underlord, the Plated Mage. I wanted to let you all know that I have returned from my unplanned tour of the Inner Planes and will now be resuming my position as manager of the dungeon. The interim manager has been consumed by the machine. That is all.This is a fun idea I came up with in my Stonehell megadungeon campaign.
Hello, Stonehell! This is your benevolent underlord speaking. It has come to my attention that several areas of the dungeon are experiencing advanced structural deterioration. Cave ins, obstructions, et cetera. Therefore, I would like to remind everyone to refrain from eating and enslaving the kobolds faster than they can reproduce. If you see a kobold slacking off, give him a good kick. And if you *are* a kobold, then get back to work, you lazy dog! That is all.My obvious inspiration was the similar messages in the video games Portal and Portal 2. For anyone who is not familiar with them, these games are basically puzzle games, where the player has to solve a series of increasingly difficult physics puzzles in an abandoned laboratory. Throughout the game, a psychotic AI speaks to the player over the PA system, offering a mix of advice, encouragement, insults, and death threats. This greatly enhances the atmosphere of the game and adds interest to puzzles that might otherwise become tedious and repetitive at times.
Hello there, Stonehell! This is your friend, the Plated Mage. I wanted to let you know that I am looking for volunteers to undergo arcanatech conversion. You may have already seen some of my prototypes roaming the dungeon. They were the monkeys. That shot lightning. If that sounds like what *you* want to be, then come on down to my lab. You know where it is, just one floor down from the casino. That's if you want to shoot lightning. If you want to be a monkey, I can't help you.
May I have your attention, everyone? This is the Plated Mage and I have an important safety announcement. Do not go messing around in my old lab, the one near the giant cube. There is nothing interesting in there. Most likely you'd set off one of the magic traps and die. And if there were anything interesting, you'd never figure out all the spells to make it work. Talking to you, Fulkth. Leave my toys alone. That is all.Often I would use the messages to refer obliquely to things the players had done in the dungeon, to show how their actions were having an effect beyond what they could see.
Hello again, everyone! I was thinking about what I said earlier, and I realized that none of the creatures I have mind-drained since I got back have seen any kobolds in the past few months. I am beginning to suspect that they have been wiped out completely by predation, incineration, or something else that rhymes with vacation. If you know anything about what happened or who is responsible, please send word with your next sacrificial tribute. I'm re-instating that, by the way. One live victim per week. Thanks.
Attention, denizens of Stonehell. This is your benevolent underlord, the Plated Mage. So far, no one has come forward to take responsibility for the disappearance of our kobold work crews. Rest assured that my spies and minions will soon get to the bottom of this mystery. In the meantime, if your area of the dungeon looks especially unstable, try to find some slaves with construction experience. I hear there's a bunch of hobgoblins upstairs. Good luck!Of course, my Plated Mage was a bit of a moron, so more often than not he misunderstood exactly what had happened or built up the players' deeds to have been far more impressive than they really were.
Attention, Stonehell. I have some good news. We've figured out who killed the kobolds. One of my divination experts revealed under torture that it was a party of adventurers led by Sir Bobbin of Blackmore and the elf priest Caramel. If you know anything about these troublemakers, please send your best assassins. Aside from that, if anyone knows where we can get some new kobolds, that would be helpful. Thank you.
Hey there, Stonehell. This is your invincible underlord speaking. My spies have uncovered a few more clues about those rogue adventurers. It seems they are financed by local farmers. One of them is a local wrestling champion. Another one is a miniature owlbear. Or possibly a crocodile. And there might be either a bard or a wizard. I'll be honest, these reports are pretty unclear. One thing that's not unclear is that these people are highly dangerous. If you see them, please exercise extreme caution as expressed through reckless violence and unchecked aggression. That is all.