Counter Monkey – Thieves’ World, Part 2: The Chicago Way

The Spoony One | Mar 4 2012 | more notation(s) | 

The party decides to deal with their arch-nemesis, the immortal Tempus Thales, in the only way they can: the Chicago Way.

  • ORCACommander

    2 hours 10 minutes Holy Shit!

  • Geoffrey Stanfield

    Woohoo, Counter Monkey to make for a perfect Sunday, ah Spoony, thank you!

  • Nick Burns

    Wow, that was crazy long – but also crazy awesome. That sounds like the absolutely perfect campaign from a player’s point of view.

  • Efrain Ibarra

    Moral of the story: Don’t throw acid at someone’s face unless you want the campaign to devolve into Skullfucking.

    • Jayden Reynolds

      I believe the song “Skullfucker” by Brocas Helm is appropriate here.

  • jake


  • Tyler

    Best Counter Monkey Ever

  • HedonisteEgoiste

    That was incredible. How rare is it that you find a team of roleplayers that are THAT GOOD? Man, that’s the kinda thing that makes me want to rangle some people together for a game night. You make a hell of a story-teller man.

    • ORCACommander

       I try to play unorthodoxly and a bit on the humorous side but its kinda hard when the rest of the group or 1 or 2 of it will not follow in that.

  • fruckert

    This was a fantastic story, dude.
    Probably either the or a high point for the Counter Monkey series.

  • Mike Bernklow

    My parents played DnD when it first came out.  All their friends did too, I was raised around people who were always reminiscing about their old characters and stories.  This was the single best RPG related story I have ever heard, and I doubt it will ever be topped.  Thank you so much for a rambling 2 hour experience that I don’t regret a second of watching.

  • Jordan Kirk Ferguson

    That was awesome, I love hearing about great campaigns. Please keep em coming Spoony, Counter Monkey is one of my new favorite internet shows! :D

  • Adam Malone

    That. Was. AWESOME!
    Thats gonna be a hard one to top.

  • ORCACommander

    I am not sure if i can live up to such epicness in my adventures

  • Daniel Gilfillan

    That story… was un-fuckin-believable.  Honestly, if it were a movie, it would be the most unique, darkest, humor filled fantasy epic ever made.  What more can I say, that one single fluke of a turning point transformed everyone involved.  It turned conquers into madmen, thieves into heroes, a city… into chaos.  There’s your tagline.

  • Renaissance_nerd

    My god Spoony I wish I could have been a part of that game. It sounded so fucking Epic.

  • Nicholas Randall

    It’s stories like these that make me wish I had a group of people to campaign with. That was undeniably one of the most gripping stories I’ve heard in recent memory.

  • terrorismofthemind

    Great story, Spoony. It makes me want to start up D&D again.

  • John Titor

    Wow, all of this for one jar of acid. Great videos Spoony. 

  • LeeEnfield

    19:40   So the guy jams is dick into her eye and murders her in public, and– oh, ha, my puppy is doing something cute on the bed!    …woo. Never seen tone shift so hard…

    • sprezzatura15

       haha no kidding- I was all “wha-wha? yes, do lets talk about Oreo!”

    • Herman Cillo

      Huh. I didn’t even notice that sudden tone shift. I’m used to Spoony going from serious to “puppy is being cute” in the blink of an eye.

  • Darren Green

    That was seriously like a great movie, I would have paid money to watch that.

  • Ryan Cann

    My god. 0.o

    That was one of the best stories i have ever heard, and it was truely your best counter monkey yet. 

  • Ponies

    This was a brilliant story. 

  • Christina

    Re: The Stepsons of Thieves World

    Actually, I’m certain the regiment of the Stepsons and their sacred bond is modelled after the historical elite regiment of Theban hoplites, the Sacred Band of Thebes, consisting of a unit of 300 soldiers paired off in 150 male couples. This was done on the idea voiced by Plato that a man would fight more fiercely and bravely if his lover was by his side so as not to appear cowardly in the eyes of his beloved, and he would not desert his partner on the battlefield even in the face of certain death.

    The Sacred Band of Thebes won many battles for the Theban city-state, even against forces outnumbering them, (i.e. in a battle against Spartans). Thebes was one of the many city-states of Greece, a rival of Athens. The Sacred Band of Thebes was eventually defeated and killed during the Battle of Chaeronea against King Philip II of Macedonia, because they refused to surrender, and the whole regiment was buried together, lovers and beloved side by side.

    The Athenian Greeks on the other hand were not into homosexuality per se as we understand it today, as in “homosexual relationship between grown adult men”, but they maintained that only men were able of true love (among each other), whereas women were for marrying and making children. In Greek society it was common system that older men acted as mentors for adolescent boys, which did include pederasty. They were supposed to introduce their wards to the conventions of adult life, and to teach them a trade. Greek men were not allowed (or at least not supposed) to marry until they were 30 years of age, by which time they had to be able to support a family, and then they were married to an 18-year-old girl.

    Homosexual relationships between two grown men were frowned upon on the basis that in Greek culture, the idea of sexuality was not to much defined by the age or gender of the participants but by their role: active (penetrating) as the male role, or passive as the “femine” role. (Similar to how Hispanic men in modern Brazil steadfastly maintain that regular sexual contact with other men doesn’t mean they’re gay or bisexual, as long as they’re the “pitcher”, not the “catcher”.) Beardless boys were praised for their feminine beauty and tried to please their mentors. But Greek literature also has mocking accounts about grown men who dressed like women, shaved their bodies, and tried to make their gestures and voices feminine… although I suspect they were probably not homosexuals but transvestites.

    • Christina

       Hm, seems I was right. Googling for the name of some half-forgotten Thieves World characters, I stumbled across this page:

    • Agrippa911

      I would also add that hoplites weren’t an elite form of soldier, just your average militia from any Greek city state. You did have elite groups of hoplites such as the Sacred Band or the Spartan citizens. But 99% of hoplites were just well-off farmers (you paid for all of your gear yourself which put it outside the reach of any landless poor) with variable military training.

      Surprisingly good story considering the length. And wow, did things go dark fast.

  • Ben Alsop

    Wow!  That was a fantastic story.  I wish I could have been part of a campaign like that.

  • Samuel B

    Amazing story. Why can’t Hollywood make movies with stories like this instead of the same tired Michael Bay vomit?

  • Jordan Selby

    Spoony, we all love these stories, and we all love you for telling them. Let me just say that this was your best counter monkey yet! Absolutely fantastic, and with such great twists and turns.

    Best of all, though, is the length. Please never feel the need to shorten your stories. When I saw that this latest upload of yours was 2 videos each being an hour, I almost wet myself with happiness.


  • fatalrob0t

    That… was fucking EPIC. I love the inventiveness that came up with those guys and the inventiveness of the decoration in particular. Given the same sort of situation I’d probably be doing the decoration job in a similar fashion. If these guys are going to be doing loads of horrific damage then all bets are off. You want to play then we’ll Play. If you’re going to skull fuck a woman to death then we’re going to leave a bunch of these pairs to die on flaming pikes. 

    This was awesome. Thank you so much for sharing that.

  • Justin Garcia

    One of the best counter monkeys ive seen

  • bojak90

    That was awesome.  I admit the skull-fucking bit was a bit much…but then I read up on Tempus and yeah…I could see that.  Also, I am glad you let them kill him.  I realize there is a reason characters like that normally don’t get killed but honestly, that’s a lot more awesome and he sounds like a lame character anyway.  I really got into this one too.  Lie I started to wonder if they could kill him by dumping a smelting pot full of melted gold on him, or if they would try to do really freaky stuff with the stepsons like take two of them alive, cut their arms off, sew them back to back and make them hobble back to the castle (yep, even I got caught up in the disturbing stuff).  great stuff

    • sprezzatura15

      judging from what you wanted to happen to the Stepsons, I take it somebody’s been reading up on their Aristophanes? Maybe not, kinda sounded like it though lol.

  • Tim Spiegler

    Noah, for the love of God, write this screenplay.  Pitch it, sell it, I saw this so vividly in my head, and I think the world deserves this group and their adventures.

  • Matthew John Bates II

    This is my favorite video by you.   Not counting Spooning with Spoony

  • Tyler Breuker

    I was  literally applauding  these guys.  There’s good planning and then there’s being a master strategist.  I love great strategies like these and they are F***ing brilliant.

  • Sharpdressedkidd

    What I absolutely love about this story is that that one fateful tiny decision to throw a flask lead to the horrific deaths of thousands and the downfall of an empire. How every twist and turn, for good or bad, happened as a direct result of someone’s impulsive instinct.

  • Darkscar

    ah another great story by a bard named spoony…..hearing all this makes me want to get into d&d even more

  • draxo

    Great story! I think its an epic story.

    Not sure the god would give him back his healing as opposed to passing the powers to someone else I mean.. the god knows he was a loser who just lost, and that what had happened was all planned as opposed to him winning.  Surely the god would choose another champion? (regardless of the writers just wanting him to remain their mary sue)

    Anyhow, nickpicky.

    Epic story, I loved it.

  • Dreammirror

    Awesome story Spoony! I did love the vampire larper who killed the entire coven with c-4 better but this one was close :P.  I do want to commend your players though on a point-Always stick together!  Ive DM’ed too many campaigns where the players turn on each other or sale each out each other-they fall apart fast and people drift away.  Also, Kudos on you for rolling with the unexpected and going off the beaten path/crippling that Mary Sue NPC.  I always remind myself as a DM-even the friggin Emperor in Star Wars was taken down by someone in the end-NO ONE is a god, or untouchable in the end.  If you ever do a con in Texas sometime, offer a 1 shot D&D campaign for an afternoon-I would pay money to sling dice with you :)

    • sprezzatura15

       Haha yeah, the vampire Larp was one of my favorite Counter Monkey episodes too- that and Toilet Pizza :P

  • TheOvermatt

    As my roleplaying group’s de-facto DM, this is the kind of campaign that I DREAM of running at some point. Absoloutely badass campaign story, definitely gave me some inspiration for things I might toss my players’ way in the future. Thanks for sharin’ Spoony!

    • Christina

      Be careful,  Overmatt, this can get way out of hand, alienate players, and destroy a group. Especially if you’re the GM *planning* to do that from the beginning in an attempt to be “bad-ass”. That usually results in pissed-off players. With Spoony’s group, the story just kinda evolved by itself in unexpected ways, and he ran with it.

      • TheOvermatt

        No no no no, you misunderstand me. I more meant in the sense of the kind of world I can create and just for different flavour ideas really. I really like things like that sense of fighting an oppressive regime and might like to see how my group reacts to it. My primary concern when running a campaign is that my players have fun, as they’re all personal great friends of mine that I’ve known for years.

        I’ve played in campaigns where the GM was so wrapped up around doing things a certain way and just steamrolling the players that it became unbearable to play through, and I have even taken out things that I’d originally planned a large section of a campaign around because I realized that it just wouldn’t be engaging or fun to play.

        Thanks for showing concern though! Actually thought it was really cool that someone would speak up and caution me about something like that.

        • Christina

          “I’ve played in campaigns where the GM was so wrapped up around doing
          things a certain way and just steamrolling the players that it became
          unbearable to play through”

          I know what you mean. :-) I’ve caught myself doing it once and it still pains me to think back to it.

  • Hastee

    this campaign NEEDS to be made into a movie.

  • Christina

    At about 33 minutes I stopped the video and said to myself, “My god…impaling soldiers and piling up severed heads… the characters are unwittingly erecting altars to the Goddess of Murder and Rape! And they aren’t even her followers. Is this going to end with the Goddess abandoning Tempus Thales and taking the character responsible for the “decorations” as her new Champion?”

    But yeah, blindly escalating the violence like a moron all because of an initial incident that was an accident sounds like Tempus Thales, because all he understands is killing, and coming up with excuses for his existance. Spoony’s story brilliantly illustrates why I hate insane and “unbeatable” evil demigod characters in stories. But I guess they’re popular with a certain type of writer and readers. And Thieves World was invented by Asprin in, what, 1978? But the blame for Tempus can be placed on the feet of Janet and Chris Morris.

    Although there was a character, one of the Stepsons, who was an even bigger wanker than Tempus, in a whiny brooding hypocrit way, what was his name… Critias? Sod him. Ohgod, I forgot that Tempus had a daughter that was an even bigger Mary-Sue than he was. 

  • MisterCrim

     Who’d have thought that sitting in front of a computer screen and watching a man talk for almost two and a half hours about a tabletop RPG campaign would bring me as much joy and excitement as sitting down to watch Seven Samurai again. I probably haven’t watched that in at least two years (not sure why, I own it on DVD) and this tirade was the most entertaining thing I’ve seen since. If not for the graphic/disturbing imagery (I can’t be the only one who immediately thought of A Serbian Film when skullfuck murder was mentioned) this would make for an excellent series of films. There was a villain who was (as mentioned) as compelling as Dark Knight’s Joker, a group of Ocean’s Eleven style thieves/heroes that even Sun Tzu would praise for their strategies (well, except for the unnecessary loss of life, but these are hardly ideal circumstances), and the underlying moral struggle of impulsiveness versus decisiveness with the added sub plots of romance, internal group turmoil and a criminal empire. Keep Michael Bay, George Lucas, Steven Spielberg or Uwe Boll away from it and you’ve likely got a Game of Thrones level epic production.

    I live in constant fear that there will, one day, be no more stories to tell. Hopefully, that day is a long way off.

    • Vismutti

      … It could still work with the disturbing parts. You could cut away from the worst to reaction shots. And I don’t even think that’d be cheap, I think that’d actually make stylistic sense: people would know that this isn’t a gore-fest, but on the other hand they would also KNOW what happened there, not the details but they would KNOW what it was simply for the fact that it wasn’t shown, their imagination would do the work for the movie.

  • Devon Bays

    I was 

  • Jayden Reynolds

    Spoony, fucking adapt this into a screenplay. I don’t care if you have to finance it with Internet reviewer money, this is brilliant. Fucking TOLKIEN would be impressed. You want to see a tense, character-driven but plot-filled fantasy epic? Get this shit made. Even if it has to be multiple movies, just get this shit made.

  • Kaleb Mayo

    Novel worthy story! I’d write it, but I’m not that kind of Thief…

  • Eliot Wolf

    That was awesome Spoony. I’m hoping the new setting I’m making for my players is this good.

  • David Idiart

    This was possibly the greatest 2+ hours I have ever spent in front of a computer screen. I hereby award you 9,001 Internets. Good show, sir.

  • sprezzatura15

     spoony, you are a freaking epic DM… while you might have complimented the party for their ingenuity, I’ve got to hand my proverbial hat to you for turning things around when they just completely derailed your campaign, and rolling with it to get that kind of result. I just started DMing for nearly my first time a couple of weeks ago, and it is NOT as easy as it looks, particularly when the party catches you by surprise! Anyway, great story, you’ve given me lots of DM ideas- I would totally play in anything you ran!

  • Felipe Aguena

    godamn it! I never comment on anything (althought I love your stuff to death) but jesus crist man this was a fucking great, GREAT story! 
    seriously this has potential to be made into a movie man

  • Reza

    Just added to my bucket list: play in a game DM’d by Spoony.

  • David Cardenas

    I’m going to have to agree with everyone else here and say that this story was absolutely amazing. I cannot believe such greatness emerged from a guy attacking completely on impulse.  

  • Joel Frapart

    Dude.  This is fucking brilliant man.  You need to turn this into a screenplay.  You’ve got elements of a heist movie about a rag tag team of thieves against an iconic villain and becoming unintentional crime lords and revolutionaries.  Take this shit, turn it into a mini-series for HBO.  Have you seen Spartacus?   They’d eat this shit up.  You change the cannon names of the villain and the city, change the death by skull fucking to just public rape or something… this will work

  • Marshall Tavares

    Get rid of the copyrighted stuff and write a script.  

    • Turcano

       I don’t think he’d even have to do that.  This is an open universe.

  • Troy Bennett

    Here We go. My random musings.

    – Spartacus/300 Meets Ocean’s 11; That’s EXACTLY how this series would look on screen. Turn it into a 5-10 part mini-series ASAP.

    – “I’m not that kinda thief” is CLASSIC comic relief mischief. T-shirt worthy

    – I can imagine a re-jacked Brad Pitt as Temest Thales or someone as manly/monstrous. Achilles meets Harvey Two-Face.

    • Chibito

      You know, “I’m not that kind of thief”-shirt wouldn’t be a bad idea at all.

  • Lord_of_the_Ninth

    I really, really enjoy these Spoony. Keep them coming. 

  • modtyrant

    That was like a bad ass movie plot in the making!


  • TheOneCalledSloth

    Okay dude time for you to write a three seasons tv show.. just change up names and minor details, keep the rape, brutal gore, comic relief and the surprisingly deep plot and you will have made one awesome series man!

  • Nathan Hill

    The story reminds me of Saints row: The third in a way. Tempus= Philipe (Acid=Shooting up philipe’s plane)/killbane (Skull fuck= Destroying gat’s funeral)/STAG (martial law) The Party=The saints

  • DoodleMoogle

    It’s beautiful when a plan comes together. This was the best Counter Monkey yet. May I have another?

  • Tony

    That was just awesome. Nice story, and thanks for telling it.

  • Jay Vee

    Great, simply great. Never played a live action role playing game, loved every one of these. Keep it up! And looking forward to your thoughts on Ultima 9.

  • Papa Bungle

    This was unambiguously the best Counter Monkey yet. 

  • Alex Perez

    Ho-ly hell. Hell’s holy stars and freaking stones shit bells. That was… I need to invent a new word to describe how incredible that story was. Um…. Awsephenomepicsomenal? Is that any good?

     At any rate, I really love how one single action turned what sounded like a fairly standard campaign (no offense, I’m sure your original plan would have been fine) into something truly epic that shook the status quo of the entire city to its core. This is a really cool story. If this campaign’s story was somehow adapted into an official Thieves World novel (or heck, even an unofficial one!), I would totally buy it (and I had never even heard of Thieves World until this video!).

    As others have said, this is the best Counter Monkey yet!

    • Cortés Catapulta

      I love your new word almost as much as I loved this Counter Monkey story!!!

  • Markos_1980

    Thank you for uploading your role-playing experiences Noah. This brings back nostalgic memories for me too. Ugh! back to work…

  • Daniel Tyler

    Best story of tabletop i’ve every heard…and it shows to me as newly started dm…i’ve got alot to learn ^_^

  • Adam Stackenland

    I was bewitched for 2 hours and it was so worth it! 

  • Moritz Lorey

    Most awesome story ive heared in a long long while, Spoony is just the man.

  • Celeste LaScala

    So, these Stepsons are The Sacred Band of Thebes? The Sacred Band of Thebes was a elite troop of selected soldiers,
    consisting of 150 lovers and beloveds, who formed the elite force of the
    Theban army in the 4th century BC. As Phillip II said,  “Perish any man who suspects that these men either did or suffered anything unseemly.”

  • Sean Rivera

    This has got to be one of the most epic stories I’ve ever heard. Someone needs to make this a movie! 

  • Liezl Bohnen

    Best. Story. Ever!! :DDD
    You seriously make me want to at least try a tabletop RPG if only just once. Sadly, in my country nerds of that calibre are very hard to come by, and the ones that exist are all meat-heads who only want to be the best like no-one ever was with their fighters. For this reason I’ve never tried to play before but now I really want to! *siiiiiiiigh*

    Anyway, I loved this story!! I loved it so hard!! You gotta share more countermonkey stuff with us if you have any others, even if they’re not as awesome as this was. Story time is Fun time.

    Also, this was a liiiiiitle longer than 90 minutes Spoony XDD and it was awesome.

    Also, I believe homosexuality was actually encouraged among the hypolites because, let’s face it, you’re gotta fight harder and be more pissed off if some-one fucks with your boyfriend.

  • Andrew Browner

    Welp, that was my bedtime story tonight, and right now, I am FEARING the dreams this will bring.

    But aside from that? Spoony, you have made me want to try a Tabletop RPG more then ever! That sounds like the kind of story people could only dream their characters being a part of!

  • Vismutti

    Ohhh I love the preview frame. :D And I love Noah’s incredibly wrong assessment of how long he spoke. xD But to be fair: IT DIDN’T FEEL THAT LONG. I got so into the story that honestly, I could have sworn that wasn’t more than maybe an hour or so. Seriously, I could have watched a movie in the time it took to watch this (and yet, I wouldn’t choose any other way :D).

    I can’t even say much more because I’m just in awe of the story. That was fucking awesome. And really, I’m glad you went ahead with the horrible skullfuck scene… as horrifying as that is, I get the sense that you didn’t do it for the gore but because that’s what the character would have done. It was a realistic way to go… horrible, but realistic. And you know, this is how things escalate in real life conflicts too when things get bad enough. They do even now. This is something that happens to women in war zones. I haven’t heard of skullfucking but the stuff I HAVE heard is just as disgusting. (If you want to know, four words: rape with broken bottles.) And they do that just to break the morale of the enemy.

    I kept thinking that you guys probably just learned a lesson on the human mind there… And it’s an epic way to learn it, by finding yourself descending into mindfuckingly cruel deeds, even if it’s just in a game.

    I can’t blame you at all for letting them have a breath of victory. I get the feeling they really did earn it well. And they did pay with the lives of two (or three? I forget now) of their own. I honestly kinda love how the guy whose girlfriend got raped to death just threw his own life away to buy the others time. I can so get into his mindset in a situation like that.

    On a completely different note: I seriously feel like trying GM:ing again now. This is something that’s been brewing throughout all these CM episodes I’ve watched actually… I think I’ll still suck at it but you know, you’re giving me so many ideas and a feel of what a good GM should be like and I honestly feel like I want to try again. :D I think you’re like becoming my idol, Noah.

  • Sindre Sørebø

    This story was fucking awesome, I can’t really say it in any other way. I was riveted through the whole thing. It reminded me of just how fun roleplaying can be and made me think back to my own fond D&D memories. I haven’t played in years but I’ve always really wanted to get a group together again, this story made that desire even stronger.

    And about the campaign itself, I love dark roleplaying and the “example” is pretty much as dark as it gets. When that part came up I actually laughed, I’m not necessarily proud of it, but I did. Before I go rambling on any further, awesome story. I would love to play Thieves World at some point if I can get a group together for it and find the source books.

  • banned_guy

    Decapitation and jamming ones own balls to the mouth,
    damn, that’s Witcher 2 levels of cruelty and darkness.
    Yeah – funny how such images you can now find in video games.

    (no decapitation here though)

    regarding the story as a whole – love it

  • chaosmaster

    will be cruel to the Stepsons, and through our cruelty they will know who we
    And they will find the evidence of our cruelty in the disemboweled,
    dismembered, and disfigured bodies of their brothers we leave behind us.
    the Stepsons will not be able to help themselves but to imagine the cruelty
    their brothers endured at our hands, and our boot heels, and the edge of our swords.

    And the Stepsons will be sickened by us, and the Stepsons will talk about us,
    and the Stepsons will fear us.
    And when the Stepson closes his eyes at night
    and they’re tortured by their subconscious for the evil they have done, it will
    be with thoughts of us they are tortured with. Sound good?”

    Sorry, just
    had to do it. But seriously: This. Was. Brilliant!

    I put some
    pretty dark stuff in my campaigns before. I once had a mercenary leader the
    party had antagonized slaughter an entire village and put the heads of every
    single person on pikes in the village square, just because the party spent a
    night in the local Inn.
    But I never had anything even close to a dude publicly
    skullfucking a women to death. And there is a simple reason for that: I know my
    limitations as a GM, and I would not be able to make that enjoyable for the players.
    Now, I have to be careful so this does not come out the wrong way – things like
    rape and murder are not ‘enjoyable’ in any situation. But as a GM, you have to
    know your players, you have to know what they are comfortable with, and you
    have to know your own limitations as a storyteller when it comes to how you set
    the mood of your campaign.
    Running a story this fucking dark and grim (one
    could almost call it grimdark) without it just getting uncomfortable for
    everyone involved takes a damn good GM, and the fact that Spoony managed to
    pull it off is pretty impressive in my opinion. And I know this is a bit of a
    sore spot, because the whole D&D thing with Jason and the rest didn’t end
    that well, but I would love to see another campaign with Spoony as the game

    Maybe some day :-)

  • Unholy Fire Dragon

    I think we finally found a potential Spoony movie.

  • Jamie Sheil

    I would post a really long comment highlighting how awesome this counter monkey story was, but I think everyone else has covered it pretty well :D.

    This was awesome stuff spoony, keep it up!

  • sbkMulletMan

    “Citizens, you had best bring me these men or I will gouge out your eyes and SKULL-FUCK you!!  I’m the fucking God of RAPE!  I’m the Goddamn AVATAR!”

    Face fucking, mass slaughter, anal impalement, testicles shoved into mouths and eye sockets, it’s amazing what can come about when one unfortunate schmuck rolls a 20 and an 18!  That’s ALL it took to break everything down to this level. 

    And you know what?  I’m glad it happened!  Bless you, Brendan, your irrational impulses have brought us the finest tale of Counter-Monkey to date!  

    That was a damn good 2 hours.  I wish I could begin more of my mornings this way.

  • ScreamingDoom

    Y’know… it occurs to me… did anyone point out to Tempest near the end that they gave him what he desperately wanted, something even his patron goddess couldn’t give him?

    They gave him a challenge.

    I mean, the dude is constantly bored, right? Even the constant warfare is pretty dull for him, yes? Yet here were some folks — not even remotely superpowered — who managed to continually win against him. When was the last time he was as involved in something as he was desperately trying to kill these people? I’d be willing to bet not in a long while.

    Sure, maybe he didn’t get the KIND of challenge he wanted, but beggars can’t be choosers.

    • Vismutti

      Hey, good point. :D

    • bryanpe

      He may have found it entertaining if not for the fact that he took a flask of acid to the FACE.

  • Dragdar

    So well told!

    I enjoyed this like you wouldnt believe!
    Maybe you should have gone in more detail about Tempus fight,

    I like how you make sure we understand the setting.

    So much fun to imagine.

  • Steve Banta

    Freakin’ epic tale, Spoony.  I love these Counter Monkey stories, and this one is by far the greatest.

  • Mero Krill

    Honestly, listening to you tell that story and imagining it in my movie i’ve seen in a long time..and im not praising my own imagination but something about the way you tell it makes it really easy to create epicness without Hollywood budget

  • Logion

    This was epic. Spoony, you can really tell good stories and make them entertaining.

  • Pontus Hashis

    ’twas an epic greater than anything retold previus!

    Seriusly great story, and worth the wait since you put up stuff last =D

    Love Counter Monkey, and I would just love to see Tandem The Spoonys Sheet.
    He would make an awesome NPC!

  • ftidus12

    Since we’re on the subject, I’d like to share this statement by Ash of “Nerd Appropriate” which I think sums up many of our feelings about D&D and roleplaying in general.

    “I’m a pretty normal guy. I grew up playing video games, watching
    Thundercats and eating Doritos just like the rest of you.  When I was
    about seven years old I traded my next-door neighbor Chris a stack of
    Garbage Pail Kids for his 1st edition Dungeons and Dragons Monster
    Manual.  I was a bit too young to really understand what the game was
    all about, or how it was played, but boy did I really love those
    monsters.  Being eight,I picked up a stack of crayons and used that
    Monster Manual as a coloring book.  I still have that book on my shelf
    today and think those pictures are nothing short of amazing.  There is a
    big misconception about people that play Dungeons and Dragons.  People
    still think the game is just for “nerds” and social misfits.  I would
    argue that D&D is for anyone that likes adventure, laughing with
    friends, and imagination. The people I play with are teachers, pilots,
    doctors, chefs and animal trainers. No matter who you are or where you
    are in life, Dungeons and Dragons will always be around for you to
    escape reality, roll some dice, and have a damn good time.”

  • Robin Nabbing

    You should wright a book. Wright your own fantasy series about this.

    I mean, sure, you took the setting, the backstory, and some characters
    from Thieve’s World, but the campaign was an original story, right?
    Just change a couple of things, but keep your original characters and
    story, and base the rest loosely on where you got it from, and it will
    be GLORIOUS!

  • theophilus.koriander

     You know, I don’t want to reduce the awesomeness of this story in any way and I don’t know anything about the game Thieves World, but, considering what little chances the party seemed to have in the first place, coudn’t they have just fled the city. Is the whole setting of this RPG really just this one city. This seems a little strange to me.

  • doresh

    Holy crap! I’ve heard about the butterfly effect, but never heard that a bottle of acid thrown into a guys face can result in skull-fucking, mass-murder and a rebellion!

    And do people in Thieve’s World know about cement? If so, I know how to get rid of an immortal dude…

  • Aaron Kerr

    11 minutes in, and goddamn Spoony, this is the most righteous session EVER! This is so sweet, write up a script so someone can make a movie out of it!

  • Reaki

    Two hours of goodness, epicness and awesomeness. Excellent job Spoony.

  • Cameron Butcher

    Spoony, this is the first comment i’ve ever written on your site, i’ve enjoyed each and every video of yours and I must say that this pair of video’s have been the most enjoyable two hours i’ve spent on your site.

    Alter the copywritten material, get this shit in a book, sell it.

    Infinite. Money.

  • Rotafury

    Dude that was fucking awesome the best story i heard from you yet man damn dark,gritty but interesting. i agree with some of the others that have put comments up spoony you need to freaken write a book about this shit change a few things or use the open license any thing just get that out there i know i would buy it.

  • Liz López

    Spoony should definitely write a book. He’s an awesome storyteller.
    I mean, he’s the only person who can make me sit for two hours and just listen, no flashy images or videos needed, just… listen.

  • Aleksander Adamkiewicz

    This was the best story i’ve ever heard, at the end I noticed i was leaning towards the monitor and clutching my armchair because it was so intense.

  • Clint Miller

     This was seriously one of the most awesome stories i’ve ever heard! I
    sat here for two hours straight, and was intensely riveted. I was
    seriously rooting out loud whenever something awesome happened. I’ve
    probably read 200 fantasy novels, and this was sooooo much better than
    basically anything I’ve read. I’ve played rpgs for years, and I’ve never
    had a DM who was so good that they could work player’s choices into an
    epic campaign. seriously made my day, and keep up the incredible work. 

  • Qalest

    Jeez – all you need to get Spoony fans giddy with delight is just a little skull rape and ass impalement.  Do this again the next time they start complaining about the time between vids.

  • LunaticFringe20

    That was fucking amazing. The fact that you as DM and your players synchronized so well really made it, as you mentioned, flow really well. The rapidly increasing stakes seemed like a logical outcome to what the players were experiencing, and the fact that you let them make their own decisions really helped to make it a well-developed campaign. This needs to become something, a novel, a tv show, I don’t know. 

  • Martin Mehawk

    So many others have already stated this: But goddamn Spoony, make a movie out of this. Make SOMETHING out of this. Change a few names, change a bit of the setting and you got yourself one of the most original and intense stories in fantasy yet. A movie, a novel, a comic ANYTHING. o.o

  • barbieboy

     this was DAMN GOOD
    sure you’re other counter monkey video makes me sad I never played these games but this one just takes that to a new level.

    two very good spent hours

  • André Norell

    Best use of two hours in my life. This story was… wow. Just wow. I honestly didn’t know it was possible to reach the HSQ just by talking about a campaign from years ago, but you Spoony, you can pull it off with gusto.

    If you ever get tired of making videos, you could probably get a job on a radio station dramatizing novels. You are an excellent storyteller.

  • Jón Daði Skúlason

     im having a problem with the site, whenever i try to watch a video on the spoonyexpirement, the browser crashes, it only happens with video from this site, and it seems to plague old videos as well as new, i have tried 3 diffrent browsers and restarting the pc, but to no avail. As a fan of the spoony expirement i would appreciete a looksie in to this possible error.

    • ಠ__ಠ

      Flash player tends to do that, specially with Blip’s player. I don’t know why, but Blip tends to crash a lot more than any other page.

    • Christina

      Have you tried another browser?

  • George Rosenbaum

    “The Banishing of Tempus Thale”

    Written by Noah Antwiller.

    • Kemal Thomson

      that title would spoil the ending don’t you think?

  • GunsmithKitten

    I’ve been gaming for 20 plus years, and have had glorious moments of my own, but I still say without hesitation that was the most awesome and epic sword and sorcery RPG tale I’ve ever heard. I swear, it’s like Martin Scorsese doing high fantasy. 

  • James Knoll

    Counter Monkey is, without hyperbole, the most interesting and excellent video series on this site, and one of the best online, period. Not to say the rest here isn’t good, but I dropped everything to watch this when I saw it was up.

    Keep up the good work.

  • Patrick Wilson

    That game, as you described it, was the kind of story most RPG players are hungry for. There are serious stakes, a multitude of moralities, a kind of story where a group of thieves might just become heroes.

    I’ve been a fan of yours for years, but Counter Monkey has to be one of your best. Don’t let compliments or criticism change the idea of this series. It is fantastic, and worth every moment of rambling.

    Rock on, Spoony.

  • losskeltos

    People are raving about this being some sort of J.R.R epic, but it wasn’t. The kick comes from having someone sit down and tell you a tale, face-to-face. (Almost) Granted, Spoony is very animated and that, but the magic comes from the natural activity of visualizing a story. Nothing more, nothing less. Nevertheless, I enjoyed this a great deal. Nicely done, Noah.

    • Christina

       Indeed. Half of the appeal of these stories is watching Spoony tell a story. :-)

    • George Rosenbaum

      Then maybe Spoony should release audio-books?

      Or is seeing his face also important, to get a feel for the general mood?

  • Okanehira

    That was worth the 2 hour investment, fantastic story with some really interesting story and characters, at first when you were “setting the scene” (for the first 15 minutes of the entire video) i was getting a little bored, however it was needed to help non-players understand the world and once the story began i was hooked.

    Fantastic job sir.

  • Shurikan

    I want a movie made for this. just wow

  • Sai

    I think “organic” is the word you were looking for. The campaign developed organically. God the whole thing with the knee-jerk acid flask to the face had me laughing. This sounds like alot of fun and hell could be a great basis for a book. Too bad it was based on an existing property :p

  • rewind83709

    This needs to be adapted into either an animated story, or turned into a movie!
    This was great!
    It had everything, comedy, really great characters, tragedy, horror, war, rebellion, and an epic ending!
    Thanks again Spoony, I can’t wait for more, but I will.

  • Justin Chambers

    This episode sold me on checking out D&D and Tabletop RPGs at PAX East. Amazing stuff all around Spoony!

  • Reverend-Joshua Daniel Chisim

    I set aside time to watch it and it was time very well spent. As soon as i heard the hammering on the door and the acid flask being thrown i knew exactly were this was going and i was in hysterics. Absolutely fucking hilarious and amazing story telling, every minute gripping. Kudos to you Spoony. I eagerly await more Counter Monkey!

  • Amy Flynn

    This was awesome.  What I would have done is have the god be so disappointed with Tempus Thales that she forces the characters to be the new living avatars of war and rape.  It sounds like in their fighting they themselves became as sick and evil as the man they overthrew.  They even seemed to be drawing the same joy out of it as Tempus did.  But I guess the book says you can’t do that.  Still, it would have been a great ending.

  • Tony

     The sad and really cool part about all this is, the entire time Tempest really didn’t have a choice but to do any of this. There were really no other options he could have taken. I *almost* feel sorry for him. The players didn’t have many other options, either, despite being really smart about the entire thing.

  • NightStarX

    Remove the copyrighted elements, rename the characters, change the skullfuckings into public executions, and the ass-pikings into severed heads on pikes, and get either Peter Jackson, Guillermo del Toro or Sam Raimi to direct it and you have yourself a fucking guaranteed hit movie.

  • Tristan Elliston

    I like how you have to emphasize “…With his dick.”

  • croy10067

    anyone think it would of been funny if the mage character just threw another bottle of acid in Tempus’ face in the final battle

    • Piotr Rzepka

      That would be hilarious!

  • ScutigeraColeoptrata

    …You know, if I were to go to a movie theater, pay full price, and sit down and watch this Counter Monkey episode on the big screen, I would not feel cheated. That was brilliantly told, beautifully compelling and just a fantastic epic story. Bravo Spoony.

  • Jay Small

    I think all of us shall live in awe of the achievements of Brendan Martin, Peter the Warrior, Matthew the “I’m-not-that-kind-of” Thief, and… um… the other guy.

    I know people have already pointed this out, but while I thought the Vampire the Masquerade LARP story would make a good short film/movie, this is miniseries territory right here.

    And truly, not only is the story epic, but your storytelling is beyond compare! Even the hideous, disturbing parts toward the end worked because you built up the tension over a well spent two hours! This may be my favorite thing that’s ever been posted on this site!

    Spoony, you fucking rock!

  • Heather Boster

    Spoony, I freaking love your Counter Monkey segments, and this did not disappoint. As always, the story was interesting and compelling, the characters were entertaining, and you had great energy. I have to say, I really liked that you were so willing to not only go along with what the players were doing, but you were willing to take it beyond ‘kid stuff’ as my step-dad would say. You had some pretty fucked up things going on in your campaign and you owned it.

    You make me proud to RP.

    The more I watch your reviews though, the more I wonder about your thoughts on homosexuality. You make a lot of ‘gay jokes’, but I can’t think of any particular instance where you’ve been ‘offensive’. I suppose it really doesn’t matter, and making any statement, pro, con, neutral, or who gives a fuck, would only cause some fans who feel differently to turn against you. It’s just my curiosity.

    After all, we Americans have to know what our celebrities think, feel, their politics, what they eat, where they went to elementary school, what size shoes they wear, etc. 

  • Jumpooleez

    This could be a movie or TV series. (the campaign)
    A damn good one, too.

  • William “BooRat” Blackshire

    Wow that was an interesting story!  I don’t know if I’d like the game or the books as the main character sounds like such an unlikable character I couldn’t get into it.  

    • Daniel Haughton

      Tempus isn’t the true main character. He’s merely *A* main character. There’s plenty of other characters with roles as big or bigger than him.

  • William “BooRat” Blackshire

    It was nearlly 3 hours long!

  • Jeff Gnerre

    Spoony, this was an epic story.  I only had it playing in the background while I was working because I’m a big fan of the Counter Monkey series, despite never having played D&D myself.  But once you got going with the story, I had to stop working and hear what happened next.  This has been one of my favorite in your series so far.  Great stuff, keep it coming.

    PS – I hope “I’m not that kind of thief” becomes the new “You’re in my way, sir” which became the new “I heard that, Curtis!”

  • April Von Lon

    I can’t believe a video about a guy telling an RPG story had me literally on the edge of my seat, but it fucking did. By the end there I was leaning closer and closer to the computer as I waited to see what the climax would be. People overuse the word “epic”, but you know what? This was EPIC. I enjoyed myself just like I would if I were watching a movie or a TV show or reading a really exciting book. Bravo, storyteller, bravo!

    Also I must note that I love the way you tell a story, Spoony. You don’t TELL it so much as you ACT it. You become the story, and then you take everyone else along for the ride. That’s an amazing skill. If I were half as compelling, I’d rule the friggin’ world.

    (You get really dark and intense when acting/describing evil characters and their deeds. You totally need to act in more bad guy roles just to channel some of that mojo. It’s too creepy-awesome to waste, dude!)

  • Kyle Van Pelt

    You are a testament to all that is awesome. I’ve been watching your site for years now, and this is the first time I’ve been so worked up that I had to post a comment.

    You are a magnificent bastard of the most golden kind. Counter Monkey has been amazing and would be worth visiting this site regularly for alone, the rest of your excellent videos notwithstanding.

    Fuck yes, brother. I’m glad you’re back. Using the word “epic” to describe this would be watering down the pure badassery of this series. There is more awesome in 1 minute of your videos than there are in 5 minutes of awesome.

  • Matt DiPasquale

    I enjoyed this so much. I found a few people at my college who play dnd and I can’t wait till I can have these epic tails like this. Why do I picture this Tempis guy as looking like Sorin the Planswalker from MTG. Anyway great story..all of that over some acid in the faaace. 

  • Matt DiPasquale

    If you use the word “epic” in the real English context, this was an epic tail. I also agree with you 100%

  • Matthew M Perry

    For anyone wondering about Tempus’ stats (like I was):


    Male Azehur cursed, godsworn 24, Hell Hound 2; CR 26; Medium outsider (human, immortal, native); HD 24d10+96 plus 2d12+8; hp 253; Mdt 24; Init +5; Spd 30 ft.; AC 26, touch 20, flat-footed 16; Base Atk +23; Grap +27; Atk +33 melee (2d6+11/19–20, +5 Enlibrite greatsword) or +31 ranged (1d8+7/×3, +3 composite (+4) longbow); Full Atk +33 melee (2d6+11/19–20, +5 Enlibrite greatsword) or +31 ranged (1d8+7/×3, +3 composite (+4) longbow); SA battle fervor (5/day), pack tactics, smite enemy; SQ aura of courage, cursed, damage reduction 10/magic, divine fortitude, divine health, divine protection, divine shield, divinely favored, fearsome reputation, spell resistance 31; Rep +8; SV Fort +21, Ref +22, Will +24; Str 18, Dex 20, Con 18, Int 18, Wis 21, Cha 13.

    Background Skills: Intimidate, Ride.

    Skills and Feats: Climb +6, Diplomacy +5, Gather Information +11, Handle Animal +30, Intimidate +34, Jump +6, Knowledge (nobility and royalty) +16, Knowledge (religion) +19, Ride +38, Sense Motive +32, Swim +6, Use Rope +7; Combat Expertise, Diehard, Dodge, Endurance, Iron Will, Mobility, Mounted CombatB, Power AttackB, Ride-By Attack, Spirited Charge, Trample, Weapon Focus (greatsword)B.

    Languages: Rankene (S/W), Ilsig (S), Cirdonian (S), Wrigglie (S), Nisi (S).

    Contacts: Information (Shadowspawn), Influence (Kadakithis), Skill (Cime, Crit, Niko, Randal).

    Cursed (Su): When he accepted service to Vashanka, he gained a curse. Tempus can no longer sleep, which makes him angry and frustrated but has no other detrimental effect. In addition, he cannot “know” a woman without violence, making him a despicable rapist and villain. In exchange for the curse, Vashanka granted Tempus the ability to change his appearance at will, allowing him to cast disguise self as a swift action. Unlike the spell, Tempus can allow individuals the ability to see through the disguise if he chooses.

    Spells: safe level 9th; ritualcasting +18; save DC 15 + spell level.

    Known Spells (7+9d): blade barrier (5th, MT 60, price 5) D, bless (1st, MT 20, price 2), convert light wounds (1st, MT 20, price 1), dispel magic (3rd, MT 40, price 3), divine power (4th, MT 50, price 4) D, doom (1st, MT 20, price 1), entropic shield (1st, MT 20, price 1), flame strike (5th, MT 60, price 5) D, geas/quest (6th, MT 70, price 6), greater command (5th, MT 60, price 5), magic vestment (3rd, MT 40, price 3) D, magic weapon (1st, MT 20, price 1) D, power word blind (7th, MT 80, price 7) D, power word kill (9th, MT 100, price 9) D, power word stun (8th, MT 90, price 8), shield of faith (1st, MT 20, price 1), shield other (2nd, MT 30, price 2), spell immunity (4th, MT 50, price 4), spiritual weapon (2nd, MT 30, price 2) D, storm of vengeance (9th, MT 100, price 9).

    D: Domain spell. Domain: War.

    Familiar Spells (10): augury (2nd, MT 30, price 2), commune (5th, MT 60, price 5), dimensional lock (8th, MT 90, price 8), divination (4th, MT 50, price 4), eagle’s splendor (2nd, MT 30, price 2), favored of the gods (9th, MT 100, price 9)*, fire storm (9th, MT 100, price 9), gate (9th, MT 100, price 9), hallow (5th, MT 60, price 5), heroes’ feast (6th, MT 70, price 6), mass bull’s strength (6th, MT 70, price 6), prayer (3rd, MT 40, price 3), restoration (4th, MT 50, price 19).

    *New spell; see Thieves’ World Player’s Manual for details.

    Possessions: +3 studded leather of heavy fortification, +5 Enlibarite greatsword, +3 composite (+4) longbow with 20 cold iron arrows.

    • Atmos_Duality

      Yup, looks like a typical “Overpowered Meathead with a Sword” Mary Sue to me.
      Might as well name him “Kratos” or “Sephiroth” to complete the package.

  • KillerBunnyFooFoo

    It was 2 hours plus some of pure awesome. That campaign sounds so intricate and well done that I am truly jealous that I’ve yet to have a game work that way. You could take their whole adventure and make it into a playable video game! It’s so dark, yet not so for shallow reasons, as fucked up as skull fucking and revenge murder with homophobic overtures is, it actually really does seem to fit the story! Best episode yet, Sir Spoon, even more so than Tandem’s last run (and I fucking love that episode). I don’t care how long this is, I will be forcing each and every one of my best friends to give an ear to this. Our games could be so much more epic with this kind of thinking and strategy. I just hope I don’t have to skull fuck a love interest to get it.

  • Dylan Denkiteki

    This series was so fucking epic!

  • Les Lumens

    Sounds so familiar.  There’s nothing like having a group of intelligent players who turn things upside down and create something far and above what you could have ever planned in advance.  Love the series, and hope there are many more to come.

  • phoenix7786

    Spoony…I…I can’t….I have no words for this. This is no word, no language, no symbol that can express the sheer magnitude and incredible excitement this…this…magnus opus of yours possesses. 

  • Xargas

    Spoony dude, you are in general an awesome story teller~ I noticed that in the Hotel from Hell Vlog too~ You get such passion, it makes it easy for the listeners to get involved and interested~
    Heck, I’ve never played DnD, but I enjoyed listening to each of your Counter Monkey tales~ It helps a lot that you explain too~

    Thank you for doing this~

  • Matthew Forester

    When you got around to saying that “Matthew’s” thief character died in the initial onslaught, in a single instant this scene went through my head (though it probably didn’t happen this way, but I choose to believe it did):

    The thief actually gets run through the gut by Tempus’ blade and knows he’s as good as dead.  The thief is still standing with the sword through him as Tempus’ smirks and says, “Kneel to me, thief.”
    The thief looks back at Tempus, slowly smiles to display his teeth covered with his own blood, and rasps out, “I am not that kind of thief.”

    Tempus then grimaces, pulls the sword swiftly from the thief as he takes a step back, and decapitates him where he stands.

    Thus an annoying/funny catchphrase becomes the most badass quote to rally behind, turning the thief into a pillar of heroism.

    I dunno.  That’s just how it played out in my head.

    Great story, Spoony!  Keep ‘em coming.

    • Lockgar

      I loled.

    • fatalrob0t

      That. Is. Awesome.

    • TheHarmonixer

       That is fucking badass!

    • goodguya

       This comment is too good for words.

    • jaap rutten

      That is amazing. The perfect way to redeem such a horrible catchphrase.

    • Danilo De Simone

      Yeah, that would be epic.

    • Zipper Dragon

      Not lieing, I did that, but my rpc blew himself up after that.

  • Gregory Magoon
  • John

    Just awesome dude. Thanks for putting these up. one hell of an epic story

  • Nicolaus Whittington

    Dear God, Movie, Television series, I don’t give a damn This is the best damn story I’ve ever heard.

  • CommieCatGirl

    Once you get a campaign to be just a quarter of what this was, you know that tabletop gaming is just unbeatable.  It’s just that point where people start getting obsessed and making plans outside of the game where you know you have something just totally exquisite.

  • Julian Moretti

    Spoony, i don’t know who you think i am but… I’m not that kind of thief… 

  • Adam Allen

    Fucking epic story spoony! you sound like an amazing DM.

  • Helgor

    I don´t know about you guys, but i went directly to amazon and bought the first book of the series. Might buy the campaign seting later…

    Great job, Spoony, thanks a lot.

  • Cthulhu07

     Man, these CM stories just keep getting better and better as they come. :D 

  • Mike Clayton-Brown

    You know, I’ve never cared much for D&D (and variations therefore above)…but man that was a good story and the acid to the face bit was hilarious (obviously not the the PC’s…but to me it was xD).

    I really do hope you post more Counter Monkey stories along the lines because I’m intrested to hear A LOT more of them.

  • Dragdar

    These stories prove that’s it+’s hard to beat the tantalizing power of…


  • Aaron Kaszian

    For what it’s worth, that fighting force of gay dudes is based of real history.  “The Sacred Band” was an Egyptian military unit that was considered one of the most dangerous until it was defeated by Alexander the Great.

    • Daniel Haughton

      And just like the Thieves’ World version, they would *end* you or die trying. All three hundred of them died fighting, refusing calls to surrender. When the rest of the Theban army broke and ran, they held fast.

  • Nicholas Cook

    Awesome Counter Monkey! Definitely makes me reminisce of similarly amazing stories with my own d&d group.

  • Katharina Pils

    You, my dear friend, are a fascinating storyteller :) really enjoyed listening to you even though I’ve never even heard of Thieves’ World

  • Justin Mansour

    If the group wanted to send a brutal message to Tempus, instead of resorting to hate crime territory, they should’ve used acid for their personal touch. It stands out enough, and it would’ve definitely struck a nerve.

    • Daniel Haughton

      I was thinking the same thing. Each severed head should’ve been individually acid-scarred.

  • Jon_Woo

    I just have to say that was an amazing story. Ive never had any interested in table top games as I was never one with much of an imagination 99% of the time, the other 1% my muse will strike and Ill come up with something brilliant, so Ive always been the one to stick with name generators or knowledge from previous things. That tends to make things kind of lame.

    After hearing this though Ive honestly wanted to give it a try for the first time but I dont know a single person that plays and there isnt a single game store that Im aware of anywhere around me. Ill keep my interest peaked just in case I find a group and if I do and get into it know youre the one that turned me onto trying it.

    Im a huge fan Spoony and Im pretty sure I speak for everyone else here when I say we are glad to see you getting back to doing what you do hope you keep it up.

    • Soul_Saint

      If you look around online, you’ll probably find a site/forum for people interested in playing something like D&D over a chat(Like Skype). I know there’s also a couple of different programs out there for people to make maps, characters, NPC’s, etc on that the players can sign on to. Could also do a google-search for the nearest card/game/hobby shop to you. They’re usually in tourist-attraction cities or state capitals from my experiences.

  • Soul_Saint

    Spoony, you should honestly consider writing a series of fantasy stories. You’re an amazing storyteller and come up with pretty damn good idea’s when put into a tight-spot as DM. Could even base it off your past D&D experiences. I’d definitely buy anything you’d write, and I’m sure my buddies from my groups would too.

  • unacomn

    That was an amazing story. Very entertaining and well told. I should have been working, instead of listening to it, but it was worth it.
    I really wish I had played tabletop games back when I was younger, sadly, in the places I lived, the concept was completely alien.

    • Erik Kowalsky


  • Michael Collier

    This went from hilarious to nearly FATAL level of creepy to against all odds epic. I only wish I was in a game like that.

    • Atmos_Duality

      No…you…you didn’t.
      You did not just invoke the name of the worst Tabletop system ever…
      Did you?

    • chaosmaster

      NO! You FOOL! What have you done?! You spoke the name of The Game That Shan’t be Named!
      You doomed us all!

    • Cathy Meyers

      As Gandalf the Grey once said: You done fucked up. 

  • Matthew M Perry

     It just occurred to me to ask why Tempus didn’t have a scrying spell cast to find Brendan’s character. He would have presumably had the resources to do so.

  • Jimmy Vestberg

    As some people have pointed out already, best CM so far. Great and funny story, really interesting to hear the process behind the problemsolving, especially since the party went off the grid so to speak.

  • Guy Incognitus

    I would really like to play a game half as good as that

  • Drew

    I know its been said before, but this really is the best campaign ever.  If someone wrote a book detailing the events of that campaign, I would buy that book in a second and read it non-stop.  

  • Atmos_Duality

    I’m partial to the Age of Manure Counter-Monkey myself, but that’s in part because of the instant-classic hilarity that 14-year-old logic brings.

    Just the NAMES of characters like “Hinsty David” or “Mr. Mockingham” are hilarious to me for similar reasons as Tommy Wiseau’s The Room is hilarious; it’s so bad it’s transcendent.

    Still, this is a great story and it demonstrates how Role-playing can be adventurous and fun (well, and very very dark), rather than just about pimping stats and abusing rulesets. It’s a great story to balance out the other tales in CM, where we have seen flagrant griefing, rules abuse, flaws in game-story design or even flat out off-the-wall disgusting cruelty.

    It lets the uninitiated glimpse the real stories of tabletops beyond the tired tropes of the Dead Ale Wives skit, and stereotypes. Both the good and the bad.

    • Jon_Woo

      Dont forget the double club

  • Ken Lutz

    That was the best two hours I have ever spent listening to this campaign. To me the stories people have are the best part of playing rpg’s. I really can’t wait for your next epic tale.

  • TheHarmonixer

     Amazing story Spoony. I know people have said this, but you really are a great story teller. Not a lot of people can tell a story for 2 hours, uncut, and keep it as interesting as you did. A lot of D&D players probably never have a campaign half as good as this one (and I would feel fortunate to have a campaign half as good as this). This is the best example of the true “power” of table top gaming and what experiences it can achieve in the right hands.

  • Giorgos Pvl

    I’m not gonna make a difference here, you’re a gifted story teller.
    I’d rather watch counter monkey than a lot of decent movies out there. congrats

    • JanusII


  • Justin Livingston

    Best Counter Monkey Ever. It was like two hours, but God it was entertaining. It was hilarious, it was sick, it was it was just amazing. The Thieves World world is very interesting and complex, and it seamed like all the PCs played brilliantly (except of course that split second of impulsiveness). Next time, tell us how this campaign would have gone if not for seriously pissing Tempus Thales off. Once again great job.

  • Melissa J Neal

    That was a very compelling story, Towards the end I stopped fiddling around on other sites and just sat and listened. I really love this series and look forward to more stories. :)

  • edenhorn

    The best CM yet, you are an amazing story-teller. The whole story almost played like a movie in my head.

  • Stephen Martin

    The moral of this story? Always throw acid into the demigod’s face. It will end well.

  • DarkStar9

    Funny how what you consider to be your best campaign  started with one of the PC royally screwing it up on one of the first missions, ya know sometimes we do our best when we are forced to think in the moment, and sometimes the oppose is true like when your player threw a bottle of acid in the face of a demigod with a short fuse.

    How’s about an example of something that is awesome and involves either poor thinking or poor planing: Counter Monkey.

    no matter how many details you get wrong these videos are Hilarius and fun and often exciting to, I wouldn’t really mind if you stopped with your Spoony videos and continued with nothing but this, (But please keep both up!) It’s also awesome to see someone dedicated to  a series to the point of sitting in a chair talking to an invisible audience for two hours strait to get a story out to the public to see the dedication to a game players and a DM can have, I hope to see more!

    (Oh god, I just spent more time and effort writing a comment than i ever will on an essay.)

  • Carmyn Davidson

    Wow that was quite an amazing tale. 

  • Andrew Milne

    Hi Spoony. I haven’t often been compelled to comment on this site, but here I just felt the need to speak up. This is by far and away the best installment of Counter Monkey ever and one of the best pieces of media you’ve produced, period. Hilarious and awesome in equal measure for the full 2+ hours. In fact, fuck Thieves’ World canon, THIS STORY deserves to be novelised. You couldn’t possibly make this shit up. Shine on you crazy diamond.

  • prox

    the Phantasmagoria series are still my no1 favorite, but counter monkey is a strong 2nd. and yeah, definitely the best one yet! 

  • thebowski

    Thank you so much, this has been my favorite thing that you have made.  An true triumph of storytelling and role playing.  5/5

  • MichaelT

    I commented on part 1 that I thought this story would make a really good movie.
    And then he got to the skullfucking…

    I still think it would make a great movie, but considering just how dark and grim it gets towards the end, it would have to be a HARD R, hell maybe even NC-17! And don’t say you could just take that part out; the way this story unfolds, the skullfuck is an integral plot point.

  • GreenGear

    Okay THAT was a story worth telling ten times over. It took as long as a movie to tell, and honestly this is what a movie should be made about. 

    It would take some retooling, the names first and foremost. There’d be some time spent at the beginning establishing this imperial age setting, and WHY it is both parts realism and pure fantasy, and then some time spent on character pinball (Reservoir Dogs style perhaps). Setting up the player characters as bro thieves. Setting up the Tempus character there as you have here, I wouldn’t change one thing about how you described his sheer scope of power. Until he got hit in the face with the acid, I had no idea if he’d be a deus ex machina benefactor or a heartless slasher.

    Remember that slo-mo scene near the end of Snatch where Brad Pitt in the ring starts tripping out? I imagine an effect like that would carry the pivotal acid flask moment. A spectrum of mixed feelings going back and forth between comedy, impending doom and tragedy, confusion, and sheer “OH SHIT, NOOOOOO” factor would be a backbone to all of this. I’m sure when you experienced it, it felt like a silly faux pas. Keeping part of that feeling would be essential, but I’d execute that as a pause right before Tempus really REALIZES what just fucking happened. Like the sudden stillness of the post-divine intervention in Pulp Fiction. 

    The rest of the movie would hinge on the viewer’s willingness to believe that all this shit really could happen because one guy fucked up. I certainly did. Like shooting Marvin in the face, some things just go BAD. I can imagine the fascination in an audience at this moment onward. Like. “Whoa, someone decided to make a movie about this? … Lol. Really? It’s definitely different, and not preachy. Where in the HELL is this going?” 

    Only thing I’m foggy about is the meta stuff. Like how you told US Tempus was just coming in there to save their asses and tie a ribbon on the quest, hinting at future adventure but smarmily so. That would be tricky exposition for sure. Maybe he’d be saying something about it to his guards as he’s coming to them down the hallway.

    The whole bounty issuing thing is great, and I doubt I’d change one thing about it for film. That whole back and forth of how they should kill or not kill their buddy for a pretty penny, just needing a way to drop off the wizard on Tempus’ doorstep. The way the target himself has to admit, “Yeah that IS a lot of fuckin’ money… Shit.” The plotting they have to harvest the 100 gold coin stool pigeons. 

    What’s FANTASTIC about this setup, all of it, is that by moral dilemma, the hero has to win. But this story has removed the illusions of heroes. Both sides deserve major comeuppance, but will it be both, one or the other, or neither? This would be one of those times where sitting down in a theater, surely before spoilers could reach me, I’d be puzzled as who would win THE ENTIRE movie. Either side could I guess, and I’d just be pulling straws at what the movie itself wanted to say. It’s something I really enjoyed about the first half of Death Note, and it could work wonders again here. Somewhat cutthroat thieves versus a fleshbound god-tyrant.

    I’d keep in the menace of Tempus where he starts his death-lottery, but scale down the visceral way he goes about it. I mean, yeah, cutting off the woman’s head and punting it through a field goal probably would’ve run my reservations into oblivion just as quickly. And I’d also scale down his godhood to SOME degree. While unkillable and a one-man army, there’s any number of fantasy-babble ways you can turn a man into a super saiyan. Somewhere between T-800 invulnerability and  no higher than T-1000 invulnerability.

    The whole war of attrition between the two sides, especially with the magic stuff, would serve well as montages. Assuming you have the wizard describe well enough in detail how his magic-artillery would ensure choice victories, a montage would do just fine in place of illustrating what the viewer already knew was gonna happen by way of said wizard guy pointing at marks on a map and saying in-world jargon. The choice of montage music might make or break this scene. I mean if it’s not a heartbeat of the plot, there’s no point in seeing EVERY PEDANTIC DETAIL OF IT. Having seen 300 cemented that for me.

    Putting a tyrant like Tempus through a TORRENT OF STEEL, a raw blender of overdue justice, would be the greatest guilty pleasure I’d ever sit back and soak in. And I think the player character survivors should total to about the same. I have no trouble believing some of them died the way they did, and it actually took NOTHING away from the pull of this story. Although at first you made it sound like the guy Tempus killed in melee was making a tradeoff blow to keep him busy, apparently it was just a distraction outright? That’s something I’d change just for the sake of cinematic etiquette.

    And yet I think the hardest thing to meditate upon would be the NAME of this opus. Just so long as it’s not a titular line, there’s a perfect decision waiting in the wings.

    • Robin Nabbing

      This is some really great ideas that would be great if Spoony would try to rework the story nto a movie.

      But I still feel that it might be really difficult to truly get a movie out of this. Don’t get
      me wrong, Spoony has shown that he is more than capable to wright
      great scripts, but it will be hard to get movie company to take in
      this story, and actually make the movie that we all have in mind.

      Plus, If Spoony is going
      to spend time to wright ether a movie-script or a book, he have to
      take it out of what little time he have left from reviewing, his
      personal life, and going to conventions and TGWTG events.

      My advice: Since you are
      such a great storyteller, and it IS a lot easier to publish a book
      then a movie-script, I’d say wright a book. This story is more suited
      for a book anyhow. As for the lack of time, you could probably get a
      decent co-writer. I’m sure you can find someone to help you with a
      fantasy novel, especially with a story THIS good.

      • dasfonzie

        See I was thinking if Spoony were involved in like a comedic radio show. Gives the chance of diverse topics and interactions

        • George Rosenbaum

          What if he joined up with Radio Dead Air?

          I could see him giving good commentary on WTFIWWY.

  • Steve Peters

    This was over 2 hours long. I could have watched a movie. And I’m damn glad I didn’t. This is why I love the internet. Thanks for Counter Monkey, Spoony One.

    also,”I used to be the Commander of the Guard like you, until I took a flask of acid to the face”.

  • John Sco

    I watched every second. And so closely, that I eventually noticed the reflection of your ceiling fan in Burton’s eye. Fantastic story telling.

  • Dinodain

    *Slowly Starts Clapping*

    Spoony, that was some great story telling. What I just listen to, for the last two hours, made me laugh, cheer, cry, laugh again, and gave me more feelings than any movie I seen in the last five years. The group you were in sounds really smart and awesome. I would be surprised if they didn’t want to get any credit or any recognition for their part in this adventure.

    Thank You for sharing it.

  • SunOvaGun

    You truely are a bard cause you can tell a perfect story and sounds like the players played a perfect game, its satisfying when your group gets really into it like that. Also it brings me so much glee when ever theres an epic character that a party kills and you allow it cause they played so well.

  • Nathan Ellis

    ” So, Tempes Thails skull fucks a girl to death. (pauses) Awww, Oreo”s having a dream”

    I’m speechless. 

  • Zack Norwig

    Thank you, Spoony.  That was awesome, I laughed, I cried, I was horrified, I cheered and now I am going to read the books.  Thank you for introducing me to Thieves’ World and for doing Counter Monkey and for this whole amazing site.  That was truly awesome.

    The moral of the story: don’t throw acid at psychopaths.

    • GreenGear

      Don’t throw acid?

      It ended pretty well, considering. 

      • Theo Louire

        Yeah, only thousands of people died and the society took a couple steps back on gay rights

        • GreenGear

          I know right? Pretty well.

  • Joker Marasa

    noah i fucking love listing to ur storys man the way u tell it, sounds so fucking fun and cool lol, makes me sorta want to try and play the shit, but i could listen to u talking about ur storys for a very long time, i pay so much attention and i love the storys more then i love recent movies lol, thanks for sharing them and i cant wait for the next one man :)

  • Steinar Dahl

    GREAT episode(s)!
    This story was really enjoyable and you’ve made me want to try the thieves world setting a lot! Haha!

    Jolly good show!

  • El Mickeo/Mickcol/Fu Leng

    I enjoyed that story so very much spoony. Makes me want to get a group of rpers together again and have some more adventures of my own

  • El Mickeo/Mickcol/Fu Leng

    im actually sad your story is over, cant wait til the next story

  • Fábio Daniel dos Santos

    I’ve never played D&D in my life, I know how a RPG works by playing Oblivion, Fallout 3, Dragon Age Origins and Skyrim.
    Still, I love the Counter Monkey series, and this tale is probably your best video ever.

    By God, that was awesome.
    I was literally smiling at the screen as the history went foward, and I truly wish you could remember more details that would make this even more epic.

    Also I got say that is just a pleasure to hear you speak, does not matter the subject.

    I wish you could make one video everyday day, just sitting on your chair and talking about anything.

    You’re fucking great, Spoony One.
    Keep up the fantastic work.

    • Matthew Holman

      This is exactly how I feel. I don’t know how many times I just start up a random Spoony video just to hear him talk. That might sound a tad creepy but, it’s just something about his demeanor, or most likely just his personality in general that I just love.

      • Daniel Haughton

        It’s not creepy at all. Spoony’s an entertainer, so watching his videos over again is no weirder than watching a movie over again or watching an episode of a favorite TV show over again. I do it all the time, with the Saga of Pumpkinhead being one of my faves.

    • Kresh

       Here’s the funny part; you still have no idea how pencil-and-paper RPGs REALLY work and how much fun they can be. They’re even better than all the video games you mentioned. Especially if you have a really good DM (or GM) that knows what he (or she, whatever) is doing.

      You should really go find a play group. If it’s good, your head will pop right off from the fun. Even if it’s bad, you can still have an awesome time if you try to.

  • Bhameall

    This was a brilliantly told story. I had tone of fun hearing the whole story while playing Minecraft. Thanks for sharing !

  • Matthew Cheng

    I can’t believe how amazing this two-part story was! I burst out laughing at times (not the horrific points, of course).

    I can only hope to run a game that flows as naturally as yours did. Can’t wait for more Countermonkey. I think your Countermonkey stories have become my favourite of your segments.

    Keep posting!

  • Kresh

    Ahh. Nothing so fun as a game that goes completely sideways when the DM isn’t a “But, but, but the train tracks go this way guys, come back” stick in the mud.

    I would always let my players do what they want and deal with the consequences. Sometimes it REALLY sucked for them. *shrug* They liked it that way.

  • dasfonzie

    have you ever considered a career in broadcasting Spoony? Working with the right people around you, I think you could provide a very funny show. 

  • Lazar Gruev

  • Lee Roberts

    Epic story spoony, great job.

  • mrwednesdaynight

    I like what the players did and it made for a great story. But I was just thinking, with Tempest being the avatar of rape, couldn’t they have just dragged Brendan’s character into the palace kicking and scream then bargained for his life in exchange for raping him? I know thats dark but we are dealing with a dark character here. Tempest could have pleased his God, the party walks away alive, and Brendan’s character ends up with a lot of pain and walking bow legged for a while. Tempest may not have paid out the 10,000 gold but they may have gotten off the hook.

    • David Rodoy

       Avatar of rape AND war, and she was pissed. Nothing less than messy, bloody annihilation was going to work out here.

    • Shantal Figueroa

      Also if Tempest did anything like that to Brendan’s char, I’m sure that Brendan’s char would have spent the rest of the campaign looking for vengeance anyway. 

  • Nikorl

    Didn’t mind the length at all. I still had some really time consuming work to do that I hate. It’s so mindless that I could let this play in the background and follow every word. And hell yes, work has never been so much fun! I love counter monkey! Should have gone on the entire day…

    Spoony, should I ever get rich, I promise you get a job in my villa to live there and tell me stories while I do stuff! Dead serious.

  • Andrew

    Freaking loved the story. Great work DM-ing the game. Very entertaining. Dark, funny, disturbing and even epic to listen to it. Wonderful.

  • Daniel Haughton

    People… A woman got skull-fucked to death by the Demigod of Rape and Murder. That’s squarely within the realm of That Game’s purview. That said, Spoony played Tempus completely in-character and made the right call. Whereas That Game would have such actions be casual and gratuitous, Spoony made it a turning point to the game.

  • Picard1701

    Wow, this was really, really good, engaging story. You can make a book out of this. Really you should consider writing down all Counter Monkey stories – they are usually entertaining and funny, but this… this was truly amazing. Story was gripping – you really want too know how this is gonna end? – you have unexpected plot twists, funny moments and eventheme of escalation. And in the end you have heroic sacrifice and beating impossible odds. I want to read novel about this. You can call it “I’m not that kind o thief”. ;) 

  • popov89

    I’m amazed just how awesome this story is. The desperation was real, the consequences trounce anything in any other story–make this a movie!

  • Chandler Corby

    If you released these for the ipod you would make a fuckton of money and while your it release all your reviews on dvd

    • MFlorian

      You can get mp3s of this through’s RSS feed.

  • Victor Chacon


  • Jimmy TheFish

    The first 20 or so minutes I was getting really bored but afterwards it was all gravy. Didnt really get good and hit it until the acid to the face

    The gang threw acid in Tempus Thales face, hijinks ensue.

  • Gregory Bogosian

     13:00 About the Step Sons and their similarity to the Greek hopilites. Homosexuality was not exclusive to the hopilites, it was common among all ancient Greek males.  It was more common in some cities and in certain times than it was in others, but there was never a time when the hopilites, were the only gay Greek men.

  • Michael Wells

    I was GLUED to the screen! That was such an amazing tale. I had to watch it twice.

  • Andrew Gomez

    amazing story man. i love Counter Monkey and this by far is the best story ive ever heard. i havent played any role-playing games (board games wise) but im even more intrested in starting one :) thank you

  • Dithon1

    This was amazing. Hands down the best Counter Monkey to date. I was glued to the screen the entire time, and as of this post, it’s 2:00 AM and I usually go to bed at 10 or so.

    Keep up the great work, Spoony. You really outdid yourself with this story.

    PS: The only downside to this is that it makes me want to get into tabletops even more, but the people I know who do play/want to play are in other states, countries, ect. It makes me sad.

  • Wrim Rimbaug

    That skullfucking thing left me with mental images that will stick with me for the rest of my life. I were on stage last night at the opera and couldn’t stop thinking about it.
    Thanks for the Counter Monkeys though! Great stories. 

  • twinchenzo tezzuo

    From now on I’m not considering myself a DM anymore, cause that is something beyond.
    This is the most awesome game that I ever heard of.
    Thank you for sharing, Spoony.

  • Desiree X

    Holy fuck that was the best movie I have seen all year.

    • I.B.R.

      i know right? this has been way more entertaining and interesting than almost any movie that iv seen for quite awhile. longer, too. and i loved every minute of it.

      • JanusII

         maybe except like the first 15 minutes before he gets to establishing the thief world setting and rambles about unimportant incoherent shit :-)

  • Shannon

    Dear Noah,

    I must say that (agreeing wish Desiree X) that this is far superior to anything that Hollywood as produced this year. Wonderfully told, extremely engaging, and thoroughly entertaining. I would gladly pay $12.50 to see this in theaters and I wouldn’t even think to use my student discount! I must say Noah your anecdotes have greatly aided my struggle to relax during my college senior midterms! Studying for a Civil War class has never been more enjoyable when your are listening to a tale where a flask of acid is being hurled into a demi-god’s face! 
      Cheers friend and thank you very much for all your hard work!

  • Ertzi

    Everything has been said already, and I agree with it all. That was epic-awesome.

    Not many people can keep my unwavering interest for 90 minutes by simply looking into the camera and talking. You, sir, are one of those people.

  • Josh Baerg

    A truly epic tale Spoony. You are obviously a great story teller (being a DM and all) to hold an audience for 2 hours of you sitting and talking.  

  • The_Hyphenator

    Wow. That was a hell of a story, Spoony.

    Dead serious, I think this was your best Counter Monkey to date. And I LOVED the previous Counter Monkey episodes!

    Such a hysterical, disturbing, epic story. I hope to have the pleasure of participating in a campaign like this one day, as a character or as a player. I bet it would be a blast.

  • Kevin Fumero

    That story was brilliant! I love this stuff!! Such a GREAT story! It felt so real. 

    btw When picturing Tempus Thales I pictured Cyan from Final Fantasy 6. Awesome! 

  • Kepa140

    For me this story (part 1 and 2) became my favorite one out of all the other ones. Loved it! :)

  • LER92

    Spoony is a good storyteller^^ I love these Counter Monkey’s^^
    keep it up, Spoony! my boyfriend and I are huge fans of yours!^^

  • Arsakon

    Great story, extremly entertaining and engaging. God, I miss tabletop rpg. Worth each of the 5 dollar I donated just now because of it. 

  • Mo0rbid

    Seriously this is one of your best videos. And I’ve seen them all, more than once. You’re a great story-teller

  • Diggerjohn111

    That was AMAZING! I had to go out between the first and second parts, and I RAN home to see how it would turn out.

  • Herp aDerp

    This really would make a good book. Just change the names around. Here’s an example of the acid flask part, though with my horrendous writing.
    “Oh my god, we’re so fucked, we’re so fucked. I bet there’s more goddamn occultist ready to magic our as-” Matthew spewed out before getting interrupted by an irate Peter.
    “SHUT UP AND LOOT THE DAMN BODY! If we hurry-” The pounding on the door intensified; it seemed as if it would break any second now. “nevermind, RUN!” Martin, who in a fit of instict, grabbed a flask of acid from his coat pocked and launched it at the now breaking door, hoping that he might slow the occultist down …as Tempus Thales entered the room.”Wha-wha-what the fuck?”The acid hit Tempus right in the left temple, blinding him. He barely managed a “Aha” before his screams of pain began. The group ran as hard as they could possible go, grabbing and pushing each other around as Tempus’s guards followed. They, however, knew the shadier areas of Sanctuary much better then the guards and they quickly lost the guards following them after a few false turns and a few climed walls.When they were safe in one their old meeting places, Peter grabbed Martin by the collar while Matthew was lying on the cold cobblestone, wondering what the hell they were going to do.”WHAT THE FUCK WE’RE YOU THINKING! WHAT THE FUCK! BLABLABLla-BLEGH!” yelled Peter in a fit of pure rage and confusion as he dropped to the ground looking dazzled. Martin, who was white in the face and looking about to faint during the whole ordeal, simple stood, looking out into space.

  • Ville Gunnarsson

    Role playing at it’s best. Thanks for sharing the story. :)

  • toms

    This was a really good story. I would expect a good hollywood movie to be of this caliber. Next time go even more in detail, give us more character bits and direct quotes. Because this stuff was so good that just skimming over is not doing it justice.

    And when you start recording put a stopwatch next to the camera. Then if you say something bad (like a guy’s name) just remember what the stopwatch says and take a mental note of when it happened and bleep that guy’s name out. I do feel that giving keeping the other player’s annonymous is important.

    I cannot wait for the next Spoony story.

    • Adam Pixels Mossman

      As he often says, his memory’s poor. If he doesn’t give extra detail it’s because he doesn’t remember them :3

  • goodguya

    I wouldn’t have thought anything would eclipse the heartfelt send off of Tandem the Spoony, but this amalgamation of all things brilliant about roleplaying sends my heart a-flutter. Brilliant tale, brilliant characters, brilliant campaign, and we’re so glad that you remembered it all. Was a great experience to sit down through.

  • RinguPingu

    And all for a flask of acid to the face.

  • Mary E. J. A. S.

    Oh man… these stories make me want to get into role playing so bad, but I have no idea where to begin or who to play with.

    • goodguya

      He’s made 2 videos explaining how to get in, though if you want a kickstart, join the forums.

  • Rigal Terra

    That was a bloody and epic story with an interesting narrative weave between the in game events and the players.

    I just can’t believe I sat through a two hour talk on role playing.

  • Дмитрий Минин

    Wow. Just wow. 2 bloody hours. I mean, you even managed to wear down the dog(that was the plan, right?). Still worth every minute, such an epic story. And I think it’s very visual-esque and filmworthy. “I’m not that kind of thief” is a great running-joke, and moments like mugging snitches are awesome. So it’ll work great on fim, except skull-fucking bit, probably. It’s too gruesome.
    The Character of Tempus as you described him would probably do it(although I’m still not sure if that’s physically possible), but someone still’ve got to come up with the whole thing. So we know you secret, you crazy awesome DM monster, you! Now I’m trying hard not to think what’s the base damage of that thing (Also trying not to think Double Dick, thanks a lot)!
    Someone probably already mentioned Sacred Band of Thebes is a real historical case of all-gay warriors in acient Greece, so that’s not really a laughing matter, it’s history!
    I also got this notion one time, that the party would probably go along the way “Well ,we can’t kill this guy, but he’s waking up without his dick” or something along the lines of covert operation at night. He may be a god, but he still needs to sleep. So Matthew would be like “Guess, I’m THAT kind of thief”. 
    But the real finale is really awesome, especially the bit where Thempus is only vulnerable, while healing through his revenge. That’s very clever bit.
    But the main point of this great story for me was characters and their creators. The question is especially valid in Thempus’s case, him being all-powerfull demigod. 
    The thing is, the Author really keeps an eye on his characters. Sure, he can write them as scum, or villains and such, but he always keeps them in-touch, on a short leach of would he would come up with. Would he would probably never do is throw acid-flask in characters face. And so he would never imagine the carnage, that could be unleashed by all-powerfull pissed-off demigod(and i really think what you made him do was logical and authentic in this case), so he would never really grasp the whole gravity and danger of such character, never give him full credit for what he is (which is a common case today in numerous works of fiction), never really thinking what to do with rampaging immortal killer.
    That’s the brillinse of RPG plot over other narrative medias – neither players, nor DM really know what’s going to happen. Sure, they can make certain steps to ensure this outcome or the other, but they can never be quite sure, cause it all comes down to fate, human behaviour and dice. 
    PS You should totally write a book. And then have it turned into film or series. And keep being awesome.

  • Minna

    And here I thought our group did f*cked up things on our sessions. Turns out we have nothing on this group. I’m still reeling from Thales little example, I didn’t see that one coming at all.

    Yet, strangely enough these videos just made me even more exited to continue the current campaign with my RP group. Please, let tomorrow be friday…

    • Steven Allen

       Neither did the barmaid! :D

  • Petr Matafonov

    Now write a book!

  • Kevyn Galli

     Just finished watching this after the Prisoner Dilemma one, and please Spoony, please keep bein’ this awesome.

  • Nick Kipouros

    Is there any way that you can be cloned? I have a group of friends in dire need of a DM this genius. I’ve watched this 3 times and loved every minute, never stop these!

  • Andrew Pritchard

    I would be really interested in watching a regularly published dnd game with you dming, either with the group in person or using an online tool, would be interesting to see the campaign unfold in a real time and see each persons take on their individual characters.

  • SoldierHawk

    Oh Spoony, these hour long Counter Monkeys make me so frigging happy. Just wanted you to know. :-)

  • pambas

    Great story Spoony.

    I enjoyed it, the story was great … Acid on his face was gold and more so the Chicago Way.

  • Dark_Xzeon

    SPOONY MAKE THIS A MOVIE HOLY FUCK THIS WAS AMAZING. I need this whole story as a movie, right the fuck now. So fucking enthralling, this was one of the most interesting stories I have ever heard in my life. If you got any more stories like these PLEASE record them.

    You should somehow get these guys back together and run the sequel campaign of Tempest’s Mighty Return.

  • Dark_Xzeon

    Im not even fucking around Spoony, literally everyone in the comments is saying make this a movie. Like get in contact with the World of Thieves publishers or something man, this story is so fucking amazing. The whole series is an anthology right? This story just needs to be written into a book, then it would become a legit entry into the series, then get some movie deals going to adapt some of the books and BAM this story becomes a movie. Do something man, I want to see this story as a movie so bad, this particular story and universe of the World of Thieves sounds like it is just bursting with potential for a movie franchise. Get on this bro, for real, this could be what makes you rich, not even joking, the story was THAT fucking good.

    • Boosterseat

       Most of the novelty of this story is that all of these events came by complete chance. You would never expect this to happen the way it did.

      In a movie, people are expecting a polished story. I’m not sure how many people would think it is plausible that a huge epic spun out from some idiot throwing acid in the face of the demigod of war by complete accident. It would certainly be a unique story, though. I’d watch it.

  • MechaVelma

    I’m surprised that your players never thought of how to turn that bastard’s immortality against him. Tempus was immortal, but obviously not invulnerable. I’m thinking along the lines of taking an immortal and sticking him an iron cage that would horribly distort the human form – whereas all joints would bend in the wrong direction and proper healing could never truly occur. Or worse, the bones would heal, but not in any manner that wouldn’t make the simple act of moving or even breathing excruciatingly painful.

    Essentially making Tempus a prisoner of his own immortal body.

  • Boosterseat

    If made into a screnplay, for the skull-fuck scene I’d imagine cutting away to the heroes’ faces watching during the actual rape, and having an uproar and screaming coming from the crowd off-screen. Then cut back to Thales putting his pants back on with blood all over his lower body. The shock value is too much to pass up in terms of making things serious business.

    • James Austin


  • Sam Pagano

    You should stream the campaign you said you where starting soon, that would be awesome to see and watching them first hand seems interesting (it would also be really helpful for starting GM’s like me to see a vet do it)

  • Matthew Bickert

    Excellent story

  • .

    When I read “the Chicago Way” I thought “without pants”.  But that’s Chicago-style.

  • Aodhan O’Leary

    My god this sounds like such a great group. I am so very envious.

  • MrSaxon

    Do you DM any online games? Sounds like it would be a blast to run through an adventure with you as the DM, but I live in England. :( Make it happen Spoony!

  • Arvid Axbrink Cederholm

    Spoony, you should totally check out the game I sent you, Apocalypse World. The play always drives from a compelling situation and strong characters, and not by a pre-planned plot, just as this game.

  • Arvid Axbrink Cederholm

    Oh, and it’s good to see you back in the game.

  • Griffingrey

    That was an awesome story. Please tell more about your roleplay adventures
    you have had through the years. Keep the great stuff going, and great too have
    you back.

  • exploda

    Ha ha ha!  What a story Mark!  More like Tempus Fails!  Hawhawhawhaw!

  • Nick

    I am so, SO lucky that this is the first “Counter Monkey” I’ve watched. I WILL be watching others.

    • mattanus

      they are all so good. my favorite new spoony segment in years.

    • Martin Bumbleberry

      I want a new one

    • Martin Bumbleberry

      I want a new one

  • David Ness

    I’ve started a thieves’ world game after hearing this 

  • Elias Willey

    This story makes me think of my friend. He LARPs, all the fucking time. I’m not kidding. He’s in character all the fucking time. And he’s one of those guys that Mary Sues the shit out of his character. To name the powers of his characters: Immortal, can stop time for as long as he wants, master swordsman (with adamantium weapons no fucking less), invincible (not having a lot of HP. Literally invincible), master of magics who could make golems out of anything, immune to every magic, able to break ANYTHING, able to summon Bahamut from FF8, wielder and master marksman able to get a kill-shot, from the hip, with a shotgun, while not looking, and aiming at enemies behind friends, having to hit a target the size of a soccer ball without hitting anything else every single time. It’s bullshit, and every time I call him out, he backpedals with the defense of staying in character and calling my character mentally insane.

    • Ben Smooker

       If your friend is over the age of 15…..section him.

  • Brian Frang

    This campaign would make a great movie, I think.

    • Arthur Slightom

      That’s a movie I would watch.

  • Arsh Darksbane

    Thanks. Now I want to run Thieves World. 

    Haa…I run games that are very heavily political-social driven pretty often, but this one makes me looong for a game to go this way!
    My games are pretty real and can get pretty dark… so I totally enjoyed this story. 
    Fantastic episodes, Spoony! Keep’m comin!

  • RightousMan

    this is such a epic review man. Very nice. The set up was a bit long but over all i’ve enjoyed it. This is my 4th time watching both. Brings me back to the good old days of dnd and no job.

  • João Vicente

    Amazing story spoony. But I am glad I was using phones at some parts…. I have no idea how i would explain the skull thing and the impales and other stuff to people who were around me :p

  • Lance Bravestar

    Here’s a guy who’d be describing a brutal rape scene, and then pauses to talk to his sleeping dog, and then back to the rape scene. Bravo, Spoony. I went from “Holy crap, what is wrong with you?!” to “Aaw, that’s adorable.” and then back to “Holy crap, what is wrong with you?!”

  • Mehow ‘Felix’ Bilewicz

    When you spoke about hoplites you were thinking about the Theban Sacred Band. Great video btw.

  • Zach Nero

    This needs to be a movie. NOW!

    • Ray Lackey

      Exactly what I was thinking since about 40 minutes into part 1.

  • Christina Przybys

    you really have a way with words.  you’re an incredible story teller!  i love Counter Monkey, and can listen to you talk for hours :)

  • saibot216

    That was a freaking amazing story! I need to play an RPG again.

  • Chris Dapper

    Stepsons=Ginyu Force. That is all.

  • Guest

    Spoony have you ever tried Call of Cathulu?  Considering your GM skills, I’m pretty sure you would make an amazing campaign.

  • Duffman18

    Spoony have you ever tried Call of Cathulu? Considering your GM skills, I’m pretty sure you would make an amazing campaign.

  • Beqa Khitiri


    I can seriously think of a movie based on it and it would kick ass :) At least I’d definitely go to the cinema to see it :D

  • Joachim ‘Torzelan’ Sandberg

    Amazing story, these ~2 hours were far more entertaining and gripping than most movies I’ve seen haha!

  •önfelts/641682422 Greger von Schönfelts

    I loved this story XD so fucking awesome  

  • William Bettencourt

    You can definitely make a great movie out of this story!!! best story ever!!!

  • Das_Bass

    I’ve seen this 2 times before, however, after getting home from my 3rd round of the new magic set I sat in my seat (still running on all the damn soda they pumped into me the 8 hours I was there.) put this on and started working on my new deck(s) It really helped move the time along and what was even better was when I was there some guy brought up one of your counter monkey stories and we got into a whole thing about that and tails from games we’ve played ( both table top or online rpgs) I only wish our game could get off the ground =/

  • Ger.Brony

    The Lottery Trick was pretty good, but i would have been Tempus i would have reacted earlier by either shadowing the informants by his spies and then shadowing the party to their new hideout or would disguise myself as an informant and wait to get mugged by the party. SURPRISE!

  • Aidan Artymiuk

    You know you could start a whole new series where you went into greater detail about all their adventures I know I would like to here more in depth about what they did PS You are Awsome :)

  • Drew Taylor

    I was just reading Shadowspawn’s guide to Sanctuary (one of Green Ronin’s books) and it had a stat block and description of Tempus, who seems killable, even mentioning a time when someone saved his life (this was when he had his powers).  Now, I just started reading the books recently, but from all the information I have, it seems Tempus is indeed killable, just INSANELY had to make DIE.  Now, it would take some really high levels to take him on, not just level ten or so, but he can still die.  It seems you actually made Tempus even MORE powerful in your game.  

  • Jared

    I have to say i thorouly enjoyed that, and i am glad i finally finished it lol. Also just to let you know, the whole acid to the face inspired me to play as a Alchemist in the pathfinder game my friend is/was DMing. It was not as awesome as hitting a Demi-God in the face, but me and my fellow PC’s ended up fighting creatures that were pretty rediculus :)

    I look forward to the next one that i watch!!!!

  • Jeff M Long

    I would pay money to have you run a game… no shit.

  • CheezeFox

    Am I the only one who’d seriously like to see this whole campaign made into a film or series.

    • Rowan J Coleman

      I’d seriously like the MAKE this campaign into a movie!

  • Dani Bollenbacher

    Damn, you’re a good storyteller. Put this on in the background to listen to while I was working…annndd…now I forget what I was supposed to be doing.

  • Joshua Rollins

    spoony….I would love to watch anything animated or acted out about this story. hell even if it was Pictures or drawings that are just added to you telling this Epic tale. Thank you for these last 2 and a half hours.

  • rageofkyubii

    I kinda imagine, when the thief was at Tempest’s mercy, horribly beaten and barely able to stand, clearly not walking away no matter what, like a hair’s breath from dying….

    Tempest: “Tell me where the others are and what they’re planning, and I’ll spare your life. Betray them and I will reward you with your life.”

    Thief: ~coughs up a bit of blood and smiles grimly~ “Sorry….I’m not that kind of thief.”

    And he goes down swinging. Would totally be a badass use of that little in-joke and an epic way to go out.

    EDIT: And I just saw the comment below mine is basically exactly the same as what I said. Whoops. lol

    • Jon Von Basslake

      I actually prefer your story better, i mean, he wouldn’t betray his friends even in the face of certain death :D

  • Matthew Michael McLuhan

    I had a couple of great Exalted games with my group of friends which was about as organic as the game Spoony talks about. One of them was a fairly standard Solar exalted game. My character was a slave-freeing ninja who had put together a small settlement of saved slaves. An army was gathering on the gates of the town, headed by a major canon character, named Peleps Deled. This is a major character sort of like your Tempus guy, and he very nearly killed my character before he was brutalized by our party.

    Another game was our Avatar game, which was a homebrew Exalted based on the Avatar the Last Airbender setting, but instead of the Avatar being one person, it was basically a top of the line bender of a single element, there were 5 of them (we had Wood bending, which I can’t really get into right now). It was amazing, both of these campaigns lasted 8 months a piece.

  • Samuli Rimpiläinen

    Wow…. if I ever have a campaign that’s even 20% as awesome as this, I will die a happy man. I’ll see how my knew one goes since we’re only having third session tomorrow so things haven’t developed much yet.

  • Nicholas Alexander

    Sacred Band is the name of Thebes’ gay pairs of soldiers in real life! Philip of Macedon and a young Alexander had a rough go of it… so to speak.

  • James Rutledge

    i can imagine someone writing a book about this adventure it was great

  • Louis Lovechild Haggard

    That was truely one of the greatest stories ive ever heard, if spoony knows anyone who could even do the most bareassed level of flash animation and could get them to adapt this id buy the fucking dvd, then buy more as presents for friends.

    I only wish it was longer, it would be nice if hes still in contact with these people who may be able to remember some finer details of the stuff he left out, like meeting up with the rebels and the romance side plot.

    dont know about anyone else but the description of how Tempus went down made me think of kurt russels death scene in Death Proof, made me laugh out loud and smile.

  • Alex Flowers

    Dude, this is indeed an EPIC story! you NEED to adapt this into some kind of novel or screenplay!

  • Das_Bass

    It’s just a game, Man.

  • Kristin Kindy

    I would totally read a book of that campaign or watch that movie. Awesome. It makes me want more of the Pathfinder posts. Well, I already wanted more of those, but MOOOAAAAARRRR!

  • Danilo De Simone

    And all of this, ALL OF THIS, happened because a guy didn’t let a DM finish a phrase.

    Why these things always happens to Spoony XD?

  • Elijah Anderson

    this would make an awesome movie.

  • Taylor William Hardy

    god that would be an awesome movie/tv series

  • Ville Gunnarsson

    I’d love to see Quentin Tarantino direct this story into a film – he alone could do justice to the grotesque violence and absurd humor. :)

  • bloodhowl

    I think part one and two have been switched around.

    • Guest

      How would that have made sense?

  • llepsnaci

    this story would make an awesome movie! …or book

  • Petr Matafonov

    Rewatched it. Yeah, it’s epic and made to be adopted into movie script. A book, at least.

    • mafon2

      Relistened it again. Shit, it’s a good story.

  • Benjamin Colecliffe

    Why is it that for that one bit I can totally see 90’s kid coming in and saying:
    “Duuuuude, that was… wait, did he just…? Man, that is wrong. That is totally un-radical.”
    Just like with superman prime in countdown.

    Maybe I’ve just watched too much atop the fourth wall. Oh, while I’m here quick poll: Who else voted Insano for president?

  • Yury Elburikh

    I damn hate immortal ones. Really that’s weak move to place someone and like “you can’t kill him. fuck you, that’s why”

  • kamrom dechu

    This was most definitely a compelling story. Nothing I could say would possibly do it justice. I was a very compelling story. I’d been planning to go see a movie today. Yeah, screw that. You had me on the edge of my seat, something no movie has done in years.

  • Daniel Tilson

    “Why didn’t you betray me?”

    “Money wasn’t good enough.”

    “What happens when it is?”

    “Well, that will be an interesting day.”

  • Daniel Tilson

    While I don’t know the setting well at all, if he hasn’t screwed up badly enough to be completely abandoned in the hundreds of years he’s been serving the goddess, it’s unlikely that she’d completely abandon him for this.

    It’s also a question of power. If the Goddess had another option that was as powerful as him as a mortal, she might consider it, but even then it would be questionable.

    • Dudley

      While I see what you’re saying, I think I’d have gone the same way, basically, as Geoffrey.

      • Daniel Tilson

        I understand his reasoning for going that way, but, the whole point of running a game in an established setting, is to play it in that setting.

        They have never (from what I know,) and probably will never write Tempus’ permanent death, so roleplaying it would be grossly out of place.

        They have written several instances of the goddess withdrawing her protection somewhat, and taking his powers away, but she has never let him die permanently. I’m certain he’s disappointed her far far worse than in this story. So why wouldn’t she have abandoned him at one of those points?

        • Dudley

          The moment you start playing in a setting based on a work of fiction (or body of work), you’ve already diverged from that setting. Consider Spoony’s example about playing Babylon 5, for instance. The game you’re playing should take precedence over absolute faithfulness to the cannon.

          • Daniel Tilson

            Even in Spoony’s Babylon 5, he didn’t change that much, as he said.

            Making the goddess completely abandon Tempus is changing something very major, and, if you ever played Thieves world with those players again, you couldn’t use Tempus in the campaign or they’d feel cheated out of their previous win. Even if you were to say that new campaign means new timeline.

            Excluding Tempus Thales, from my understanding, excludes a lot of the setting material since much of it follows Tempus and his exploits.

            And again, she’s been disappointed in him before, and I’m sure she’s been angrier at him. So why would she have abandoned him over the events in this story? He’s still the best and most loyal servant she’s got.

            I could see it if someone in the party had actually bested him in one on one combat or something, as that would at least give her cause to consider choosing that person as her new vessel. But to completely abandon him over a lucky shot in the dark, and the party besting random soldiers? I can’t see it.

          • Dudley

            He changed the command staff: the players were the command staff instead. That’s a significant change.

            But anyway, we seem to be basically arguing different points. You’re arguing for what makes the most sense in terms of the books (and I’m not differing from your opinion there), I’m arguing that the game you’re running is more important than faithfulness to the cannon of the work of fiction in question. None of the PCs and none of the events in this adventure happen in the TW books; this is already a divergent take on the material. Again, to use the examples given by Spoony at the beggining of part 1: this is basically like an alternate continuity, and things will not necessarily be the same. The game you’re playing is more important than the source material.

          • Daniel Tilson

            The game is important, but again, it still makes no sense that she’d abandon him over the events in Spoony’s story when she’s never done so before (That I know of) He was punished for a lucky shot, and rewarded when he got his revenge for it.

            Spoony was staying fairly true to the source material in this story, as he said he did in the Babylon 5 story (changed enough so that they wouldn’t shoot the known bad guy in the face when they first met. That’s basically all he mentioned as major changes.) The major points of the setting outside of the party remained fairly similar.

            That’s what I’m getting at here. Yes, he’s introducing a new scenario into the setting, but it’s still the same setting. I don’t know what the Thieves World book says about Tempus Thales, but, based on what the woman who helped them said, he’d count as an outsider in that world. When slain on a realm they are not native to, outsiders are sent back to their native realm, still alive, but unable to return unless summoned by someone native to that realm for a time. That is how D&D works. And since you do in fact need the D&D books to use the Thieves World Handbook, it is still D&D.

          • Dudley

            Like I said, Spoony changed the command staff in Bab5 with the PCs, which implies some significant changes.

            As for this particular situation, it reminds me of something else Spoony says at the beggining of this story, when he brings up running games in established settings, and the event of a player going “Tempus would never say that”, to which he’d reply “Well, he does here”, and that is, the game is what matters. Personally, I, like Geoffrey, would feel that what the players have done deserves an extra reward (and as you say, you could see the Goddess abandoning them if they’d bested Tempus in one-on-one combat; they didn’t do that, but they outsmarted him at every turn, humiliated him and turned his every action against him), and the players are what matters in an RPG, not the setting.

            I know what you’re getting at here. I’ve gotten it all along. It’s just that I think that’s not the most important thing in a game.

  • CrotaroLP

    Wow, you must be such a great DM, Spoony! This story is probably the best story of an RPG I’ve ever yet heard of, and there are quite a lot, since my dad always tells me of his P&P game experiences.
    Would be interesting to know how old you were at that time, because occasionally(I think it was in the Shadowrun Counter-Monkey for example)you said you weren’t that much of a good DM…I can just say, I don’t care how long it took, if you really were as bad as you claim in the Shadowrun CM, you took a flask of +1000 level ups to the face. This is just amazing, especially since I can imagine certain DMs cutting it off at a certain spot, because the PCs “won’t stay on the hallway I prepared”

  • Deansdale

    Best story ever. I just watched the video for the second time.

  • Daniel Tilson

    I think Tempus would be closer to being The Joker. But an even closer analogue would be Bane from The Dark Knight Rises.

    Either way you look at it, he is most certainly the villain of this story.

    • Dudley

      He’s Batman in the sense that, technically, he’s the guy trying to keep “order”, in the terms in which he and the people who rule the city understand it, and in the sense that he has superior resources and basically uses that to defeat his enemies; the PC’s are outlaws using cunning to fight against a superior force, like Joker. Except yeah, Tempus is obviously the bad guy.

      • Daniel Tilson

        Bane was trying to keep “order” under the terms that he, as the one running the city at that time understood it. And he had superior resources and basically used that to defeat his enemies.

        Batman was among the many who were outlaws under that regime using cunning to fight against a superior force.

        • Dudley

          I was thinking of the comics rather than the movies. But yeah, in movie terms, that makes sense, specially as they both represent invading forces, in a way.

          • Daniel Tilson

            Regrettably, I have not read many comics. So I’m limited to the movies.

          • Dudley

            I’m not sure you’ve really missed anything.

          • Rakkrakk

            In case of Bane he has.

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