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  • giorgis 9:31 pm on July 22, 2019 Permalink | Reply

    A short Roleplaying history 

    A long time ago…

    —in a roleplaying game

    …I was playing with a group of friends. We played AD&D 2ed (Dark Sun, Ravenloft, Birthright), Shadowrun, Call of Cthulu and Star Wars.

    It was the ’90s, we were teenagers, gathering to play once per week.

    Time passed, friends changed, TTRPGs were put aside, stored in a warehouse. Computer RPGs and gaming scratched that itch a bit.

    More time passed, family came along. CRPGs no longer could scratch the itch, but there simply was no time. I remembered how hard it was to get to play once per week, even with that tight group of friends, even when our only responsibility was to studying for school. But the love for TTRPGs was still there.

    One day I stumbled upon a reddit post on solo roleplaying. At first I was sceptical. Then I found a subreddit, blogs from other fellow lonewolves. Solo roleplaying was something that worked, and there were tools designed to enable it.

    Finally I decided to give it a go. I pulled my old Star Wars the Roleplaying Game (West End Games) books from the storage, found my dice, got some pen and paper, and journeyed to my first adventure. So this is my blog, where I will talk about all things relevant to solo roleplay gaming from my perspective.

    Edit: This site is in the affiliate program of drivethruRPG, so the respective links include the affiliate id. It’s a small help with my hobby budget to try more new things.

  • giorgis 7:41 pm on March 24, 2023 Permalink | Reply
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    In the Aristrax Marches – Ep25 

    Previously in the Aristrax Marches, the Ravens of Gadun attacked and defeated gnawlings residing in a cavern complex outside of Fey Wall.

    Turn 41

    No Town Events were rolled. The Upkeep was at 3 Gold Mark, and we Helped the Town Guard to offset the cost. Temir reduced his injury to 1 Turn of Recovery, so he Visited the Town Healer at the cost of 1 Gold Mark to be battle-ready.

    The Ravens of Gadun settled into their stay at the Dancing Nymph inn in Fey Wall. Bolga, their leader, made arrangements with the town guard to offset their living costs while they stayed. Caldas was in charge of keeping an eye on their finances, while Temir went to visit the healer to recover from his injury.
    As they sat around the inn’s common room, Bolga spoke up. “So, what do you all think of this little town?”
    Myrick shrugged. “It’s quaint enough. Not much to do here, though.”
    Rina nodded in agreement. “It’s peaceful. A nice change from all the undead and gnawlings we’ve been dealing with.”
    Gerk piped up. “I like it here. The people are friendly, and the food’s not bad either.”
    Caldas nodded, taking a sip from his mug of ale. “I agree. It’s good to be in a place where we don’t have to constantly be on our guard.”
    Temir hobbled in, a bandage around his leg. “I just saw the healer. She says I’ll need a few more days to recover.”
    Bolga frowned. “That’s too bad. We can’t afford to sit around here for too long.”
    Myrick raised an eyebrow. “What’s the rush? We can take a break for a bit. It’s not like we’re in a hurry to get anywhere.”
    Bolga shook his head. “We have a job to do, Myrick. We can’t afford to sit around here and waste time.”
    Rina spoke up. “But Bolga, we’ve been working nonstop for weeks. Don’t you think we deserve a break?”
    Bolga sighed. “I suppose you’re right. We can stay a few more days, but we can’t let our guard down. We still have a job to do.”
    As they settled back into their drinks and conversation, Gerk suddenly sat up. “Hey, did you hear about the ghost in the Haunted Shade?”
    Myrick rolled his eyes. “Not another one of your stories, Gerk.”
    But Gerk was undeterred. “No, I’m serious. I overheard some of the locals talking about it. They say there’s a ghost that appears every full moon.”
    The Ravens of Gadun laughed and joked, enjoying their respite in Fey Wall. They were warriors, but they were also friends, and they knew the importance of taking a break every once in a while.

    For Adventuring we’ll attempt a Hideout Raid to finish with the Gnawling horde once and for all. I rolled that the enemy is 11 Gnawling Warriors led by a Captain, and that the battlefield theme is Ruined Tower. I took some expressive liberty here because I wanted to use my DIY Mordheim-styled ruin. It could have been an old manor or ruined barracks (or both considering how buildings were repurposed according to the needs and occupants). For fluff I added some craters around the building representing perhaps tunnels made by the gnawlings.

    The Ravens of Gadun set out from Fey Wall towards the gnawlings’ hideout, a ruined manor with a network of tunnels dug by the ratmen for better access. As they journeyed through the forest, they kept a watchful eye out for any signs of danger, scanning the trees and undergrowth for any signs of movement.
    As they drew closer to the hideout, the warband slowed their pace and began to move more cautiously. They could hear the gnawlings chittering and scurrying about in the tunnels beneath the ruins, and they knew that they would have to be careful if they wanted to avoid being ambushed.
    Finally, they arrived at the edge of the ruins and surveyed the area. The manor was dilapidated, with large holes in the walls and a collapsed roof. The tunnels dug by the gnawlings were visible all around, and the warband could see the ratmen moving about inside.
    With a sense of determination, the Ravens of Gadun prepared to strike at the heart of the gnawlings’ operation. They knew that they would face tough resistance, but they were ready to do whatever it took to eliminate the ratmen threat once and for all.

    The Combat

    ROUND 0

    Temir and Myrick move stealthily towards the gnawlings, their hearts pounding with adrenaline. As they draw closer, they can hear the sound of chittering and scratching growing louder. Caldas moves in, but his foot hits a loose stone and sends it tumbling down the tunnel, alerting the ratmen to their presence. “Oh, for the love of the Lady!” Caldas curses, his voice echoing through the tunnel. The gnawlings swarm towards them, teeth bared and claws extended. “Looks like we’ll have to do this the hard way,” Myrick grins, unsheathing his Heartseeker blade.

    ROUND 0
    ROUND 1

    Temir and Myrick exchange a quick glance as they continue to advance, their blades at the ready. Bolga moves steadily through the woods, using his knowledge of the terrain to stay out of sight. Suddenly, two crossbow bolts whizz past them, but they remain unscathed behind their cover.
    The ratmen close in, their chittering and squeaking growing louder by the second. Then, their captain emerges from the ruins, his eyes burning with hatred and rage. “You will pay for intruding on our territory!” he screeches.
    Myrick deftly dispatches the two ratmen charging him, while Bolga deflects the attack of another. Caldas charges forward and with a swift move of his sword, kills the Ratman near Bolga.
    Rina takes aim at the Ratman captain and lets loose an arrow, but it bounces off his armor. The captain snarls and points at the warband, shouting orders to his subordinates.
    Two ratmen break away from the group and charge towards the warband, their eyes full of fury and bloodlust. The air is thick with the stench of death and battle cries as the Ravens of Gadun prepare for the next wave of attack.

    ROUND 1
    ROUND 2

    Bolga grinned triumphantly as his cleaver sliced cleanly through the ratman warrior’s neck. Myrick engaged the ratman captain in a fierce duel, managing to wound him but taking a hit in return. Temir circled around and landed the final blow, dropping the captain to the ground.
    Caldas rushed to the north fence, where a Ratman crossbowman was retreating. The halfling swung his sword, but the Ratman dodged and fired a bolt at Caldas, narrowly missing him. Another Ratman fired a crossbow bolt at Temir but missed as well.
    Myrick fought off two more Ratmen with ease, while Caldas managed to wound one of his attackers. Gerk joined the fray and struck down the wounded Ratman. Rina continued to fire arrows at the Ratmen from a safe distance but missed her mark.
    The melee in the centre of the battlefield raged on, with the remaining Ratmen putting up a fierce resistance. The Ravens of Gadun had taken out several of their enemies, but the battle was far from over.

    ROUND 2
    ROUND 3

    The remaining Ratmen flee from the battlefield, leaving only two gnawlings standing. Myrick charges at one of them and swiftly kills it with two quick strikes. Meanwhile, Caldas and Bolga team up against the last Ratman, who puts up a good fight but ultimately falls to their combined efforts.
    The warband is victorious, but the air is heavy with the stench of blood and death. They take a moment to catch their breath and survey the area, making sure there are no other enemies lurking in the shadows.
    “Well fought, my friends,” Bolga says, wiping the sweat from his brow. “We have proven ourselves once again.”
    “Aye, but we must not rest yet,” Temir replies. “There may be more of these vermin hiding nearby.”
    “You’re right,” Rina adds. “We need to search the ruins and tunnels to make sure they haven’t left any surprises for us.”
    With a sense of determination, the Ravens of Gadun begin to search the area, knowing that the battle may be won, but the war is far from over.

    ROUND 3



    We rolled 5 Adventure Points earned for being Victorious against an Enemy Threat, and 1 Adventure Point more for defeating the Captain. 6 Adventure Points were spent directly on reducing the Gnawling Threat by 1, going down to zero, and destroying the threat.
    Caldas, Bolga, Rina and Myrick earned 2 XP each, while Temir earned 3 XP. Myrick advanced to Level 6 and earned 1 Toughness point more.
    Gerk had a Flash of Insight roll, and didn’t earn anything, so I used a Milestone to make Gerk a Hero with the use of 6 Adventure Points.
    We had 1 more Loot roll for achieving the Objective and 1 more Loot roll for destroying a Threat. Also we had 1 additional Unusual Finds roll for achieving the Objective. So we found overall a Partial Armour, Torches (2), a Bag of Tools (3 GM), Precious Metals (6 GM) and Tapestries (1 GM).
    We added 1 Story Point for eliminating the Threat.
    Finally, News Events were rolled that a Virulent Disease has spread in Newhorn.

    As the Ravens of Gadun emerged from the gnawlings’ hideout, they could sense the relief and triumph in the air. The threat of the ratmen had been eliminated, and the horde was scattered. They had fought valiantly and had emerged victorious, but not without casualties.
    As they searched through the hideout, they found a set of brigandine armor that was still in good condition, a couple of torches, and a bounty of valuables – tools, precious metals, and even a beautiful tapestry that would fetch a good price at market.
    With their spoils in tow, the warband made their way back to the hamlet of Fey Wall to rest and recover from their battles. As they settled into the local inn, they recounted their struggles and the foes they had vanquished, but also mourned the loss of their fallen comrades.
    Amidst their revelry, news reached them of a virulent disease that was spreading in the nearby town of Newhorn. The innkeeper warned them to avoid the area for the time being, as the situation was dire and many were falling ill.
    “Best to steer clear of that wretched place,” the innkeeper said with a shudder. “No telling what kind of dark magic or foul curse is causing this sickness.”
    The warband nodded in agreement, grateful for the warning. They knew that they would need to be cautious in their travels, as danger could lurk around every corner in these troubled times.
    As they settled in for the night, the Ravens of Gadun knew that their journey was far from over. They had proven themselves against the gnawlings, but there were always more dangers lurking in the shadows. Nevertheless, they were determined to face whatever came their way, for they were warriors of the realm, and their duty was to protect the innocent and vanquish evil wherever it may reside.

    Current Score

    Warband Integrity: 2/4 original heroes in roster
    Threat Elimination: 2/3 threats destroyed
    Time limit: 41/90 turns elapsed

    Session Summary

    The enemy never stood a chance. There was a small chance that their crossbows could hurt my party, but that was all. I focused on eliminating their leader quickly so that no reinforcements would arrive, and it all ended up within 3 Turns!
    Nevertheless I must say I enjoyed setting up the terrain and providing a visually pleasing table for the (albeit short) story.
    This is another milestone in my campaign at Five Leagues from the Borderlands.
    With four heroes at maxed out Combat Skill, only enemies of +2 pose any danger in combat. With a silvertree leaf and 2 Story Points available, the risk of losing another of the original heroes is too low.
    Yet, the Dusklings which is the last threat to be faced, may pose a danger, as in addition to decent combat skills and a good number of ranged units, all of them have the Counter Attack ability when they’re Wounded.
    This is a milestone in my victory conditions, as I’m closer now to winning this campaign. Fighting threats and clearing the region is a great idea for a regular, long campaign style, and it is really cool, but it has drawn long. I considered changing my victory conditions to do something else, but sitting on it, I think it would be best if I leave these ideas for another, new campaign (e.g. focusing on contracts, monsters and quests, and having threats as a side gig). Perhaps I could connect it to any surviving Ravens of Gadun or even the Wardens of Gahyrst. Also could be an opportunity to try out the tons of additional content that Ivan has released over at his patreon.
    So I’ll stay on course to try and finish this campaign, in victory, or defeat.

  • giorgis 10:32 pm on March 19, 2023 Permalink | Reply
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    In the Aristrax Marches – Ep24 

    Previously in the Aristrax Marches, a crippling blow was dealt to the Ravens of Gadun. While hunting gnawlings outside of Langecliffe, under the spell of the ratman shaman known as Skrizzik the Apostate, Caldas attacked and killed Omac Gadun, their leader. Despite the loss, the Ravens were victorious. In the end they decided to keep on going with Bolga as their leader. Caldas will try to atone for his actions as part of the warband.

    Turn 39

    Gamble Craze was rolled in Town Events. The Upkeep was at 1 Gold Mark, and Bolga Recruited a follower successfully.
    I rolled between the unused Origins, and I resolved that the new Follower would be a Preen.
    We also repaired a damaged helmet, bought a silvertree leaf portion and sold two bastard swords.

    The Ravens of Gadun arrived in the bustling town of Langecliffe. As they walked through the streets, they noticed that almost everyone was engrossed in some sort of gambling game, with cards and dice being the most popular. Bolga, the leader of the warband, shook his head disapprovingly. “We didn’t come here to throw our hard-earned coins away on games of chance. We have business to attend to.” The rest of the group nodded in agreement.
    As they walked towards the marketplace, they realized that they were one member short. “We need to find someone to cover the missing slot,” said Myrick, the wily rogue of the group. “I heard there’s a Preen warrior in town. We could ask him to join us.” The others nodded in agreement, and they set off to find the Preen.
    After some asking around, they finally found Gerk, a burly Preen with sharp talons and a gruff demeanor. “What do you want?” he asked, eyeing the warband warily. Bolga explained their situation, and Gerk seemed intrigued. “I’ll join you, but only if I get a fair share of the loot,” he said, holding out his hand for a handshake. The group agreed, and Gerk joined their ranks.
    While Gerk was finalizing his preparations, Temir decided to visit the local blacksmith to get his helmet repaired. “It took a bit of a beating on our last mission,” he explained to the blacksmith, who nodded and got to work. “Should be ready by tomorrow,” he said.
    Meanwhile, Myrick and Rina decided to stock up on some healing herbs known as Silvertree Leaf, which were said to be very effective in treating wounds. They also sold two damaged Bastard Swords they no longer needed to a weapons merchant for a fair price.
    With their preparations complete, the warband set off towards their next destination, Fey Wall. The journey was mostly uneventful, except for a location of interest they noted along the way. “We could check it out,” suggested Caldas, but Bolga shook his head. “We have a mission to complete. We can’t afford any distractions.”
    And with that, they continued on their way, ready for whatever lay ahead.

    For adventuring I decide to head back to Fey Wall to bring the supplies and also to be near the ratmen hideout.

    As the Ravens of Gadun travel along their route, they notice a small hill in the distance, surrounded by a dense forest of tall trees. The hill stands out from the surrounding landscape with its barren and rocky terrain, and a solitary structure can be seen perched on top of it. From this distance, it’s hard to make out the details of the building, but it appears to be a tower of some kind, with several floors rising high above the treetops. The tower seems to be in a state of disrepair, with cracks and holes visible on its walls. The surrounding forest is dark and foreboding, with twisted branches and vines obscuring the path that leads up to the hill. The whole area feels eerily quiet, with only the sound of rustling leaves and distant bird calls breaking the silence. The Ravens consider investigating the tower but decide against it, not wanting to risk getting sidetracked from their mission to Fey Wall.

    No News Events were rolled, and the campaign turn finished.

    Turn 40

    No Town Events were rolled. Getting the supplies to Fey Wall gave us no Upkeep Costs and an extra 2 Adventure Points.
    For Campaign Activities we Meet the Locals and got A Brief Chat and also we repaired a War Spear which cost us 3 Gold Marks.

    As the Ravens of Gadun approached Fey Wall, the hamlet came into view, a small cluster of thatched-roof cottages with smoke curling from chimneys. The group made their way to the market square, where they found vendors selling fresh produce, livestock, and various goods.
    As they unloaded their supplies, the locals came over to greet them, intrigued by the unfamiliar faces. Bolga, the leader of the warband, stepped forward to introduce themselves, and the villagers eagerly welcomed them, expressing their gratitude for the much-needed supplies.
    While some of the warband members tended to their horses and secured the goods, others made their way to the local blacksmith to repair the damaged war spear. Myrick, the wily rogue, struck up a conversation with the blacksmith, swapping stories about their travels and the dangers of the road.
    As they finished their business, the group had a brief chat with the locals, learning about the hamlet’s history and the recent threats from nearby bandits. The Ravens of Gadun offered their services, promising to keep the hamlet safe during their travels.
    With their tasks completed, the warband left Fey Wall, satisfied with their work and the new friendships they had made.

    We’re against the gnawling threat. They’re in the same map area as Fey Wall, so no travel is required. They’re currently hunting the warband, and if we fail, they’ll establish a larger presence. It’s 8 Ascended and their Sergeant.
    We’re facing them in a Cave Complex and we have to Fetch Something, as told to us by an interested party. They will pay 1 Gold Mark for a small box with a secret compartment.

    As the warband journeyed towards Fey Wall, they were stopped by a hooded figure on the road. The stranger introduced himself as Harlow, a local merchant with an interest in the ratmen’s activities in the area. He offered the Ravens of Gadun a deal: he would pay them one gold mark if they could bring him a small box with a secret compartment that he believed the ratmen possessed. “It’s important that I get that box,” Harlow said cryptically, “and I don’t have the skills to retrieve it myself.”
    The warband accepted the offer, and Harlow gave them directions to the cave complex where the gnawlings were hiding. “Be careful,” he warned. “These gnawlings are different from the others. They’re the Ascended, and they’re much more dangerous than your average ratman.”
    As they approached the cave, the Ravens of Gadun could hear the screeching of the gnawlings echoing from within. The cave entrance was guarded by two gnawlings armed with rusty spears. The gnawlings had ragged fur and red, beady eyes that glinted with malice.
    Inside the cave, the warband could see the gnawlings gathered around a small fire, their weapons gleaming in the dim light. The sergeant, a larger and more imposing gnawling, stood in front of the group, barking orders. The warband could see that their weapons were dipped in a sickly green poison.
    As they prepared for the battle, Bolga addressed his companions. “Remember, these gnawlings are not to be underestimated. They’re experimenting with magic to break their curse. Stay sharp and focused.”
    With their weapons at the ready, the Ravens of Gadun charged into the fray.

    The Combat

    We failed to Seize the Initiative.

    ROUND 1

    The warband carefully moves forward, each member scanning the dimly lit cave for any signs of the enemy. As they approach the center of the complex, they spot the small box with a secret compartment sitting on a flat rock. Bolga nods to Gerk and Caldas, indicating that they should go for it.
    Gerk nods, gripping his short sword tightly, and Caldas readies his sling. As they advance, Rina takes up position to provide cover with her bow. Suddenly, one of the gnawlings starts chanting a spell, and Rina fires an arrow in response, but it misses the mark.
    The tension in the air is palpable as the two sides inch closer to each other. The warband members exchange glances, silently communicating their readiness for the fight ahead. Bolga gestures to Temir and Myrick, indicating that they should take up positions on either side of the cave, ready to strike.
    As Gerk and Caldas approach the rock, they can hear the gnawlings’ whispers growing louder. The ratmen are closing in, weapons drawn and poisoned, their eyes fixed on the warband.

    ROUND 1
    ROUND 2

    The cave echoes with the sounds of battle as the two sides clash. Caldas rushes towards the flat rock, his eyes fixed on the small box with a secret compartment. Suddenly, an energy bolt slams into him, knocking him back several feet. He crashes into a nearby stalagmite, gasping in pain as he clutches his wound.
    Gerk charges forward, his short sword gleaming in the dim light. But he’s intercepted by the ratmen leader, who lunges at him with a jagged blade. Gerk raises his sword to block, but the force of the blow sends him stumbling back. He narrowly avoids a second strike, but the third lands solidly on his leather armor.
    Rina, perched on a small ledge, takes aim at the approaching ratmen. She fires an arrow, but it misses its mark, thudding harmlessly into the ground. The enemy, meanwhile, takes cover behind the stalagmites, making it difficult for Rina to land a hit.
    Temir charges into battle, but is quickly overwhelmed by a gnawling. The enemy slashes at him with a poisoned blade, and Temir staggers back, his strength quickly draining away.
    Myrick and Bolga rush to help their comrades, striking out at the ratmen with their weapons. But their blows fail to find their mark, and the gnawlings fight back fiercely, determined to protect their prize.
    The battle rages on, with neither side gaining the upper hand. The air is thick with the sounds of clashing blades, grunts of pain, and the occasional curse or battle cry.

    ROUND 2
    ROUND 3

    As Caldas battles the ratmen leader, he swings his fencing sword with quick, precise movements. The leader blocks the first few strikes, but Caldas quickly changes his attack pattern and lands two solid blows on the leader’s torso. The gnawling leader falls to the ground, mortally wounded.
    Meanwhile, another ascended gnawling casts an energy bolt at Bolga, who is caught off guard and is sent flying backwards in the cave, injured. The ratmen close in on Caldas and Gerk, but the two warriors are not intimidated. Caldas lunges forward, piercing one of the ratmen’s armor with his sword and wounding him. Gerk, despite being outnumbered, swings his short sword in a flurry of movements, pushing back the two gnawlings that attack him.
    Myrick engages in a fierce battle with two gnawlings, wielding his Heart seeker blade with precision. He dodges their attacks and counterattacks, killing one of them with a swift strike. He charges at the other gnawling and with two more well-placed attacks, he slays him.
    As the battle rages on, Rina takes aim at the gnawlings around Caldas, but her arrow misses its mark, flying off into the cave walls. Gerk finds an opening and rushes towards the box, determined to retrieve it.
    One of the gnawlings, seeing the tide of battle turning against them, decides to flee, followed closely by another ratman. However, one gnawling, furious at the loss of his comrades, charges towards Myrick, determined to take him down.

    ROUND 3
    ROUND 4

    The cave is filled with the sounds of clanging metal and grunting combatants. Myrick and Caldas stand back-to-back, fending off the gnawlings that surround them. Caldas winces in pain from his wound, but his determination fuels his fighting spirit. He deflects the gnawling’s attack with his fencing sword, then counterattacks with a swift strike that misses its mark.
    Myrick swings his Heart Seeker blade in a wide arc, cutting down one of the gnawlings that rushes towards him. He dodges the next attack and lands a powerful blow that slices through the enemy’s leather armor.
    Bolga and his opponent continue their brutal dance, neither gaining the upper hand. Bolga grunts in frustration as he swings his cleaver, only to be blocked by the gnawling’s rusty shortsword.
    Gerk clutches the small box in his hand, a bead of sweat trickling down his forehead. He looks around, taking in the chaos of the fight, then makes his way towards his companions.
    Rina sidles behind a stalagmite, trying to get a clear shot at the gnawlings. She notches an arrow and takes aim, but the enemy combatants move too quickly for her to get a clean shot.
    The remaining gnawlings snarl and bear their teeth, refusing to back down. They circle their opponents warily, waiting for an opening to strike.

    ROUND 4
    ROUND 5

    Caldas lay on the ground, gasping for air, as the last ratman closed in on him. His fencing sword felt heavy in his hand, and he struggled to keep it steady as he tried to fend off the enemy’s blows. The ratman was relentless, and despite Caldas managing to parry the first strike, the second blow landed hard on his chest, knocking the air out of him.
    As Caldas fell to the ground, his vision started to fade, and he heard the sound of battle raging around him. He could hear the clash of swords, the grunts of his comrades as they fought for their lives, and the gnawling’s excited chatter as they closed in on their prey.
    Rina had been watching the battle unfold, searching for the right moment to strike. She had positioned herself among the stalagmites, trying to find an opening in the gnawling’s defenses. As the last ratman closed in on Caldas, she saw her chance. With a swift movement, she drew an arrow from her quiver, and with a practiced hand, she aimed at the gnawling’s head.
    The arrow flew true, hitting its mark with deadly precision. The ratman fell to the ground, lifeless, as Rina let out a sigh of relief. The battle was over, but the cost had been high. Caldas lay motionless on the ground, and Rina rushed to his side, hoping he was still alive.

    ROUND 5


    We rolled 6 Adventure Points earned for being Victorious against an Enemy Threat. 6 Adventure Points were spent directly on reducing the Gnawling Threat by 1, going down to the last 1.
    On the injury rolls, Temir is lightly injured with 2 Turns Recovery. Caleas was only Knocked Out.
    Caldas, Bolga, and Myrick earned 2 XP each, while Temir only 1 XP.
    Rina earned the Pathwise skill on the Flash of Insight roll, and Gerk earned Scholar. Furthermore I used a Milestone to make Rina a Hero with the use of 6 Adventure Points.
    Our Loot roll was a Light Armour and Shield, and the Unusual Find was Evidence of a Plot.
    This can begin a new Quest in a Random Area (Hightower) and we’ll have to Decipher Ancient Writing.
    Finally, no News Events were rolled.

    Caldas groaned as he regained consciousness, rubbing his head where he had been struck. “What happened?” he asked groggily.
    “You were knocked out,” Gerk replied. “But it looks like you’ll be okay. Temir got hurt though.”
    Temir winced as he flexed his arm. “It’s just a scratch,” he said. “I’ll need some rest, but I’ll be fine.”
    As the warband searched through the complex, they found a set of armor and a shield. “This will come in handy,” Bolga said, examining the armor.
    Myrick nodded in agreement. “And the shield will offer some extra protection.”
    But their attention was drawn to something else they found – a letter, half-buried in the mud. It was difficult to read, but they could make out enough to know that it contained important information.
    “This could be the break we need,” Rina said, holding up the letter. “We need to go to Hightower and decipher the ancient writing there.”
    “But first, we should return to Fey Wall,” Gerk said. “We need to rest and regroup before we take on the Gnawling horde.”
    The others nodded in agreement, and they set out for the Dancing Nymph inn. They knew the road ahead would be dangerous, but they were determined to see their mission through to the end.

    Session Summary

    I’m so close to eliminating yet another threat, that I want to jump in the hideout combat right away! From then on it’s going to be only the Duskling Threat remaining. I think that Five Leagues from the Borderlands has a curious balance. It maintains a constant risk of danger. A fight maybe a walk in the park, but a misstep may easily cause a casualty. Each casualty has a good chance of a character dying.
    There was a moment where I was afraid I’d not achieve the objective, and also when Temir got dropped, I was afraid that the ratmen spellcasting could lead to yet another TPK, but thankfully, we managed to hold the field and achieve the objective in the end.

  • giorgis 11:37 pm on March 17, 2023 Permalink | Reply
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    Miniatures pt94 – Non-human adventurers (1/2) 

    Despite knowing that Splintered Light is on the smaller end of 15mm, I could not pass by the opportunity to grab some Preen-suitable miniatures. Two Ravenfolk are in the latest pack, sculpted by none other, one of my favourite sculptors – Ben Siens.

    Being well aware of the scale disproportions, I was happy to see that the non-human nature of the figurines mixes well with my larger 18mm minis. After all ravenfolk, badgerfolk, catfolk and foxfolk can be similar sized to halflings – its fantasy! The dragon folk will be on the smaller side, the goliath won’t live up to his name, and the turtlefolk will be just fine.

    I chose to paint the smaller animalfolk first. I intend to complete the entire pack, but on a later date.

    I absolutely loved painting them, and they each have a unique character. From the badgerfolk warrior-monk, to the catfolk rat-catcher and the foxfolk harquebusier. Just adorable.

  • giorgis 12:37 am on March 10, 2023 Permalink | Reply
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    In The Aristrax Marches – Ep23 

    Previously in the Aristrax Marches, the Ravens of Gadun hunted down and destroyed a gnawling force near Fey Wall.

    Turn 37

    No Town Events were rolled. The Upkeep was at 2 Gold Marks, and Bolga reduced his recovery time by 1 Turn. Bolga visited the town healer, and Omac Recruited a follower successfully.
    I rolled between the unused Origins, and I resolved that the new Follower would be a Fey-blooded. I asked ChatGPT to provide me with some character, and I was not disappointed.

    After the battle with the ratmen, the warband made their way back to Fey Wall and entered the familiar doors of The Dancing Nymph inn. As they walked in, the air was thick with the sounds of laughter, clinking glasses, and the smell of good food.
    Bolga made his way over to the healer’s corner and settled in for some much-needed rest and recovery. The healer tended to his wounds with gentle care, cleaning and dressing them before applying a soothing balm. Within a few days, Bolga was back on his feet, his strength restored.
    Meanwhile, Omac had a different task at hand. He was determined to recruit a new follower to join their ranks and help them in their next adventure. He made a public announcement in the inn, declaring that he was in need of a new warrior to join their band.
    The announcement caught the attention of a fey-blooded outsider woman who had been passing through Fey Wall. She had been looking for an opportunity to prove her worth in battle and Omac‘s call was just what she had been waiting for.
    She introduced herself as Rina and Omac was impressed by her confidence and determination. They spoke at length about their previous battles and Omac explained what they were looking for in a new member of the warband. Rina proved herself to be a skilled warrior, and Omac knew that she would be a valuable addition to their team.
    And so, Rina joined The Ravens of Gadun, taking up arms alongside Omac, Caldas, Temir, Bolga, and Myrick. They spent a few more days in The Dancing Nymph, strategizing their next move and getting to know their new member before setting off on their next adventure together.

    I equipped Rina with a Partial Armour, a Fine Self Bow and (Bolga’s) Quick Dagger (Light Weapon).
    For adventuring we’ll continue to hunt the Gnawling Horde threat. This time, they’ve been located in Langecliffe, they’re passing through, and trying to establish a larger presence in the region.
    We have to Travel to Langecliff, but we’re stopped due to Miserable Weather and have to Camp. No News Events were rolled.

    The warband had been traveling for several days, determined to find and eliminate the gnawling horde forces that threatened the region. However, they were hindered by the miserable weather, with heavy rain and strong winds making travel difficult. As they trudged along the muddy path, Omac Gadun called a halt to their march.
    “We can’t continue like this,” Omac declared, his voice barely audible over the sound of the rain. “The weather is too severe, and we won’t reach Langecliffe before nightfall.”
    “What should we do then?” Bolga asked, his hand resting on the hilt of his sword.
    “We’ll have to make camp here and wait for the storm to pass,” Omac replied. “We’ll continue our pursuit in the morning.”
    The group quickly set about setting up their camp. Myrick lit a fire while Rina helped Caldas with the tent. Bolga and Omac took watch, scanning the surrounding area for any signs of danger.
    “I hate this weather,” Myrick grumbled, huddled close to the fire. “My boots are soaked through, and my clothes are damp.”
    “We’re all in the same boat,” Rina replied, crouching next to him. “But at least we’re out of the rain.”
    Bolga, on watch, suddenly stiffened. “There’s something out there,” he hissed, drawing his sword. “Get ready for trouble.”
    The rest of the warband sprang to action, weapons at the ready. But the noise that Bolga had heard turned out to be nothing more than a stray animal, and they were able to relax again.
    “This is going to be a long night,” Omac muttered, settling in for his watch.
    As the night wore on, the rain eventually began to ease off. The warband huddled close to the fire, sharing stories and jokes to keep their spirits up.
    “I heard that there’s a dragon lurking in the nearby mountains,” Caldas said, his eyes shining in the flickering light of the fire.
    “I don’t believe it,” Myrick scoffed. “We’ve been through those mountains before, and there was nothing but rocks and snow.”
    “Well, I heard it from a reliable source,” Caldas insisted. “A farmer in the last village we passed through told me.”
    “I hope you’re right,” Rina said, a hint of excitement in her voice. “I’ve always wanted to see a dragon.”
    As the night wore on, the warband settled in for some much-needed rest. They knew that they had a tough journey ahead of them, but they were ready to face whatever lay ahead.

    Turn 38

    No Camp Events were rolled. The Upkeep was at 3 Gold Marks, so I decided that we should just eat one of our Rations. Caldas failed his Forage for Herbs attempt, but Bolga was successful in Hunting Expedition and returned with 4 Rations!.

    As the warband woke up and broke camp, they quickly noticed that the weather had improved significantly. The sun was shining, and the birds were chirping, a welcome change from the previous day’s rain and gloom. Omac, the leader of the Ravens of Gadun, gathered the group together to discuss their plans for the day.
    “All right, everyone,” Omac said, “since we didn’t reach Langecliffe yesterday, we’ll have to try again today. But before we set off, we should make the most of our time here. Caldas, why don’t you go foraging? Maybe you’ll have better luck today.”
    Caldas nodded in agreement, shouldered his backpack and set off in search of edible plants and berries. Bolga, on the other hand, decided to go hunting. He took his bow and arrows and disappeared into the nearby woods, promising to return with fresh game.
    As Caldas returned empty-handed, he joined Omac and Rina, who were preparing the campsite for their return.
    “Well, that was a waste of time,” Caldas grumbled. “I didn’t find anything. This land is barren.”
    “It’s not barren, you just have to know where to look,” Rina said with a smile. “Maybe I can teach you some tricks later.”
    As they were talking, Bolga returned to the campsite with a large deer slung over his shoulders. “Look what I got!” he exclaimed, grinning from ear to ear.
    “Great job, Bolga,” Omac said, patting him on the back. “We’ll have plenty of meat for tonight’s dinner. And with any luck, we’ll make it to Langecliffe before nightfall.”
    The warband spent the rest of the day preparing the deer for dinner, gathering firewood, and resting up for the journey ahead. As they sat around the campfire, they chatted and joked, enjoying each other’s company.
    “Hey, Bolga,” Myrick said, “how did you manage to take down such a big deer with just one shot?”
    “It’s all about technique,” Bolga replied with a grin. “And a little bit of luck, of course.”
    “Well, I hope you can teach me that technique,” Myrick said with a chuckle. “I could use some pointers.”
    The rest of the evening passed in a similar fashion, with the warband enjoying their meal and each other’s company. As they settled down to sleep, they knew that they would have to set off early in the morning if they hoped to catch up with the gnawling horde forces.

    Our Travel this time was Uneventful so we set up for battle.
    We’re facing 6 Curse Bound led by a Scheming Heretic, who’s motivation is that they’re a regular member of the group so I deem that it’s a Gnawling Shaman. Used ChatGPT for some backstory here as well.
    The battle takes place Near a Farmhouse and we have to Secure the Area.
    The enemy fights with an Unknown Enemy Marker due to the Passing through threat roll.

    The warband set off from their campsite, with Omac leading the way. The journey was uneventful, with only the occasional gust of wind disturbing their progress. The scenery was bland, with fields of grain and fruit orchards stretching out in every direction. The only sign of life was the occasional farmhouse, and even those were few and far between.
    As they approached the location where the gnawlings were sighted, the group grew more cautious, their weapons at the ready. Myrick crept ahead, scouting the area for any signs of danger. After a few minutes, he returned, reporting that he had spotted six gnawlings and a ratman shaman near a farmhouse.
    Omac gathered the group together and whispered, “Alright, team, we need to take these gnawlings down. Let’s show them what we’re made of.”
    Bolga nodded and said, “I’ll take care of the shaman. You guys handle the gnawlings.”
    Caldas added, “I’ll try to keep their attention away from Bolga so he can focus on the shaman.”
    Rina chimed in, “And I’ll use my bow to take down any gnawlings that get too close to us.”
    Myrick grinned and said, “And I’ll do what I do best, flank and attack from behind.”
    With their plan set, the warband advanced towards the gnawlings, ready to engage in battle.


    We failed to seize Initiative

    ROUND 1

    As the warband approached the enemy, they failed to take them by surprise and were spotted. The two opposing forces closed in on each other, preparing for the imminent clash. The warband, in a strategic move, divided themselves into two groups, with Omac, Bolga, and Caldas forming one, and Temir, Myrick, and Rina forming the other. The ratmen were also split into three groups, with two of them positioned on one edge, a single ratman accompanied by Skrizzik in the center, and an unspecified number on the opposite edge.
    Skrizzik, the shrewd and cunning ratman shaman, attempted to cast a charm spell on Caldas, but the halfling resisted it with all his might. Meanwhile, Temir, Myrick, and Rina tried to take down the central group of ratmen by firing arrows from their bows. Unfortunately, their aim was off, and the ratmen quickly found cover behind the farmhouse posts and tables, avoiding the rain of arrows.

    ROUND 1
    ROUND 2

    As Bolga swiftly dispatched one of the ratmen with his blade, Caldas tried his luck with his sling, but the projectile missed its target. The remaining ratman lunged towards Bolga, but the Duskling’s deft movements allowed him to deliver a wound to the ratman.
    As the warband fought, their attention was drawn to the presence of gnawlings on the battlefield, and they noticed five of them approaching the centre where Skrizzik and the other ratman stood. Skrizzik, seeing an opportunity, attempted to charm Caldas once again, and this time he succeeded, causing the Halfling to turn on his own leader. Omac fought defensively, but Caldas’ skills with the sword were superior, and he landed two blows, bringing Omac down.
    The rest of the warband, Myrick, Rina, and Temir, continued their ranged assault on the ratmen but to no avail, and Rina’s arrows ran out. The ratman closest to the warband, seething with anger at the loss of his comrade, charged forward, ready to engage in battle.

    ROUND 2
    ROUND 3

    Bolga’s eyes widen as he spots Skrizzik controlling Caldas and decides to take him down. He charges towards the shaman, deftly avoiding the ratmen and trees blocking his path. With two powerful swings of his cleaver, Skrizzik lies lifeless on the ground.
    As Bolga turns to face his next challenge, he finds himself surrounded by five gnawlings. Bolga fights ferociously, killing two and wounding two more, but struggles to keep them at bay.
    Meanwhile, Rina defends herself against a charging ratman at the farmhouse fence, but the creature’s strikes find their mark, and Rina falls to the ground. Temir swiftly intervenes, taking the ratman by surprise with his Heartseeker magic sword, and dispatches him with ease.
    With their leader and three of their own down, one ratman retreats while the other charges towards Bolga, inching closer with every passing moment. The battle is nearing its end.

    ROUND 3
    ROUND 4

    Bolga, valiantly, made a bold move to attack one of the three remaining ratmen. With his weapon at the ready, he struck the ratman with a deadly blow, which took him down in a single strike. However, the other two ratmen were not so easily defeated, and they responded with a fierce counterattack. Despite Bolga’s best efforts to fend off their attacks, one of the ratmen managed to land a powerful hit that left him unable to fight.
    Caldas, determined to help his comrade, charged towards the remaining enemies, but found himself blocked by the determined gnawlings. In the face of this unexpected resistance, he was unable to press forward.
    Suddenly, one of the last two ratmen turned and ran away in fear, leaving his companion to face the warband alone. The remaining ratman, undeterred, stood his ground and continued the fight, his beady eyes darting back and forth as he searched for a weakness in his enemies.

    ROUND 4
    ROUND 5

    Caldas stands alone against the last remaining ratman, his slender sword held high with unyielding determination. The warband members, Temir and Myrick, are still some distance away, unable to intervene. Caldas moves with fluid grace, his sword dancing through the air as he lands precise thrusts on the ratman’s body. The ratman tries to retaliate, but Caldas is too swift and nimble, and dodges the attacks effortlessly. With a final thrust, Caldas plunges his sword into the ratman’s chest, bringing him down with a screech of pain. The battlefield falls silent, save for the heavy breathing of the warband members, and the rustle of leaves in the wind. The warband has emerged victorious, though the price of
    their triumph has been high.

    ROUND 5


    We rolled 4 Adventure Points earned for being Victorious against an Enemy Threat . Also 1 Adventure Point more for Defeating a Unique Foe. 6 Adventure Points were spent directly on reducing the Gnawling Threat by 1, going down to 2.
    On the injury rolls, Omac is dead. I have no other Story Points or Silvertree Leaf the result has to stand, and downed by his own companion, that sucks. Bolga and Rina despite suffering a Gruesome injury were both only Knocked Out.
    Caldas, Bolga, Myrick and Temir earned 2 XP each.
    Our Loot roll was a Fine Longbow, and the Unusual Find was two Battered Weapons, a damaged War Spear and a damaged Bastard Sword.
    Finally, News Events that Fey Wall is in need of supplies were rolled.

    The warband looked around at the aftermath of the battle, taking in the sight of the defeated ratmen and their fallen comrades. The survivors quickly set to work, tending to the wounded and searching the battlefield for any useful loot. But as they worked, their thoughts lingered on their fallen leader, Omac Gadun.
    Bolga and Rina had been fortunate, having only been knocked unconscious during the fight, but Omac’s wounds were too severe. The Beard had fought bravely until the very end, but in the end, it was Caldas’ betrayal that proved to be his undoing.
    The warband was stunned and heartbroken. Omac had been a strong and wise leader, and his loss would be felt deeply by all of them. Myrick and Temir tried to comfort their comrades, but their words fell on deaf ears. The warband was grieving, and there was little that could be done to ease their pain.
    As for Caldas, the halfling felt a heavy weight on his conscience. He had acted under Skrizzik’s spell, but that was no excuse for what he had done. He felt ashamed and guilty for his actions, and he knew that he would carry that burden with him for the rest of his life.
    The warband was conflicted in their feelings towards Caldas. Some were angry and wanted to seek vengeance, while others were more forgiving and saw that Caldas had been under the influence of the shaman. In the end, the warband agreed that Caldas would have to earn their trust back. It wouldn’t be easy, but with time and effort, he could redeem himself in their eyes.
    As for Caldas himself, he knew that he had a long road ahead of him. He would have to work hard to regain the trust of his comrades, and he would have to live with the guilt of what he had done. But he was determined to make amends and prove himself worthy of their respect once again.

    With the death of Omac Gadun, the Ravens of Gadun were left without a leader. The warband was devastated by the loss of their leader, but they knew they could not stay and mourn forever. They gathered their belongings, tended to their wounds, and set out to continue their mission.
    The warband was filled with mixed emotions about their fallen leader. They were angry at Caldas for his role in Omac’s death, but they also knew that Skrizzik had been the one controlling him. Some members felt that Caldas should be punished, while others believed that he was a victim of Skrizzik’s manipulation.
    As they journeyed on, the warband became more focused and determined. They knew that they had to continue on and finish their mission, in honor of Omac’s memory. They also knew that they needed a new leader to guide them.
    After much discussion, the warband decided to appoint Bolga as their new leader. Bolga was a skilled fighter and a trusted member of the group. While some members had reservations about his leadership style, they ultimately agreed that he was the best candidate to lead them forward.
    The warband continued on, but with a new sense of purpose. They knew that they had to be more careful and strategic without their former leader, but they were also determined to succeed in their mission. They kept the name Ravens of Gadun, in honor of their fallen leader, but they added a new symbol to their banner: a black raven in flight, symbolizing their determination to continue on despite the loss they had suffered.
    As for Caldas, he was wracked with guilt over what had happened. He knew that he had caused the death of his friend and leader, and he struggled to come to terms with his role in the tragedy. The warband was divided on what to do with him, but in the end, they decided to let him stay with the group, with the understanding that he would have to work hard to earn their trust back. Caldas accepted this, knowing that he would have to live with the weight of his actions for the rest of his life.
    After the Ravens of Gadun had gathered their spoils from the battlefield and tended to their wounded, they set out towards the town of Langecliffe to rest and recover. As they made their way, word reached them of a nearby settlement called Fey Wall that was in dire need of supplies.
    Bolga, the Butcher, looked to his companions and they all nodded in agreement. They knew the importance of helping those in need, especially in these troubled times. They discussed their plans and decided that after they rested in Langecliffe, they would make their way to Fey Wall and offer their assistance.
    Despite their weariness from the recent battle, the Ravens of Gadun felt a renewed sense of purpose. They were determined to aid Fey Wall and make a difference in the lives of the people there. As they continued on their journey, they couldn’t help but wonder what challenges they might face along the way, but they knew that they were prepared for whatever lay ahead.

    Session Summary

    I did not see that coming. When I first read the scheming heretic’s abilities I didn’t pay the required attention, and the worst possible result came to be.
    I lost my avatar, and leader. I was frustrated, and did not know if I should continue the campaign. It felt to me as if a core component of the warband was missing and that without it they’d never be the same. Also it felt to me that Caldas would be so striken with guilt that he’d leave to atone for his actions and maybe take the fight elsewhere. I seriously cannot fathom how they could go on in this turn of events. On the other hand, from a ‘playing the game’ perspective this was not in my Victory & Defeat conditions, and it wouldn’t feel right to abandon the game after so much trouble, because of a condition that I hadn’t accounted for.
    Therefore I decided to ask the AI what would happen next, and it provided me with the plausible narrative above, so I’ll stick with it. The Ravens of Gadun will go on, with Bolga as their leader, Caldas in the sidelines carrying the guilt, and they’ll continue their fight, and aim to free the Aristrax Marches from the Gnawling Horde threat.
    I just have some concerns if Bolga will go after the Duskling tribes with the same passion that Omac would have done, or if he’ll have to avoid it altogther. But that’s a question for another day.
    Now back to the AI of ChatGPT. That’s a huge topic altogether. As a solo player I find that it’s a great tool. I wouldn’t have it take the decisions, but feeding it narrative to drive immersion, makes solo gaming so much more fun! I’ve taken the time to populate all my entries in my Rolescape with descriptions generated by ChatGPT according to my feedback, which made the whole world come to life. From locations and npcs, to deities, calendar and flora and fauna of the Aristrax Marches. You can find them all in the link provided.
    Overall I’m having lots of fun with Five Leagues from the Borderlands now that combat and campaign results can be narrated by someone else (thank you AI) with minimal effort.

  • giorgis 2:01 pm on March 4, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: ,   

    In The Aristrax Marches – Ep22 

    Previously in the Aristrax Marches, the Ravens of Gadun repeated their attempt to destroy Ugmal once and for all, but they failed blatantly. In the battle, Brobern, the young runaway that had joined the warband, was killed by the undead.

    Turn 35

    No Camp Events were rolled. The Upkeep was at 1 Gold Marks, and Temir reduced his recovery time by 1 Turn. Boots failed to Forage for Herbs, but Bolga was successful in his Hunting Expedition, returning with pelts worth 4 Gold Marks.

    With the next item on the Raven’s agenda being the elimination of the Gnawling threat, we shall travel to Fey Wall, near which, their hideout is located.

    On the way there we meet up with a Sneaky Thief who managed get away with 4 Gold Marks before we realized it.

    On the News Events we learned that Outriders of the local army are patrolling the region, so next turn we don’t have to roll to Travel somewhere.

    Omac, the warband leader, was devastated by Brobern’s death. He had been like a son to him, and the thought of losing him was almost too much to bear. Omac knew that he had to be strong for his remaining comrades, but his heart was heavy with grief.
    Temir, was injured in the battle. He had been struck in the leg, and he was unable to stand. Omac and the others tried to tend to his wounds, but they had little to offer in the way of healing.
    The warband made camp in the Blighted Vale, their spirits low and their bodies battered. Omac spent hours by Brobern’s side, his eyes fixed on the lifeless form of his friend. He knew that they couldn’t stay in the Vale forever, but he didn’t know where to go or what to do next.
    As night fell, Omac called a meeting with the remaining members of the warband. They sat in a circle, their faces grim and their eyes haunted.
    “We have to leave this place,” Omac said. “We can’t stay here any longer.”
    “But where will we go?” asked Myrick.
    “I don’t know,” Omac admitted. “But we have to keep moving. We have to find a way to honor Brobern’s memory, and to avenge his death.”
    The warband agreed, and they packed up their meager belongings. Temir was carried on a makeshift stretcher, his leg wrapped in bandages. They set out into the night, their footsteps heavy with sorrow.
    As they walked, Omac thought about Brobern and all that he had meant to the warband. He knew that they would never forget him, and that they would always carry his memory with them. And he knew that they would continue to fight, no matter what obstacles lay ahead. For they were the Ravens of Gadun, and they would never give up.

    During camp, the warband had divided their tasks. Caldas had been assigned to forage for herbs, while Bolga, was tasked with hunting for food. However, things did not go as planned.
    Caldas had returned to the camp empty-handed, his small basket dangling from his arm. He had searched high and low for herbs, but had come up empty. Bolga, on the other hand, had been successful in his hunt. He returned to the camp with the pelts of four animals slung over his broad shoulders.
    Despite the setback, the warband decided to press on towards the Fey Wall hamlet, which was located near the hideout of the Gnawling horde. They knew that danger lay ahead, but they were determined to complete their mission.
    As they made their way towards the hamlet, they encountered a stranger on the road. He was a wiry man with shifty eyes, and he claimed to be a traveler heading in the same direction as the warband. They welcomed him into their group, and he walked with them for several hours.
    It wasn’t until they stopped for a break that they realized the stranger had stolen four gold marks from their stash. The thief was nowhere to be seen.
    The encounter left the warband on edge, and they were more cautious as they continued their journey towards the Fey Wall hamlet. They knew that they could not let their guard down in the face of danger, and that they needed to be more careful in their dealings with strangers.

    The Ravens of Gadun had been travelling through the Aristrax Marches, and had arrived at Fey Wall hamlet, a small settlement near the ratmen horde’s hideout. The warband had been tasked with eliminating the ratmen, and they knew that it would be a dangerous mission.
    As they entered the hamlet, they were greeted by the sight of Duke Gauwill’s outriders, who had set up camp nearby. The outriders had been sent ahead of the army to scout the area and gather information about potential threats.
    The warband leader, Omac, approached the outriders and asked for information about the area. The outriders informed him that they had scouted the Aristrax Marches thoroughly and had not encountered any major threats. They had not encountered any signs of the ratmen horde, and they believed that the area was relatively safe to travel for a while.
    This news was a relief to the Ravens of Gadun, who had been worried about the dangers that lay ahead. With the outriders’ report, they could proceed with their mission to eliminate the ratmen with greater confidence and security.
    Thanks to the outriders’ scouting, the Ravens of Gadun were able to proceed through the Aristrax Marches with greater ease and security. The outriders’ expertise and vigilance had made the area safer to travel for a while, allowing the warband to focus on their mission.

    Turn 36

    No Town Events were rolled. The Upkeep was at 1 Gold Marks, and Temir reduced his recovery time by 1 Turn. For Campaign Activities we decided to Meet the Locals, and we Established Useful Contacts earning us 1 Adventure Point, and also to Visit the Healer to have Temir ready for fighting in the same turn.

    The inn in Fey Wall where the warband, Ravens of Gadun, will stay is called The Dancing Nymph. It is a cozy and inviting place, with a warm and welcoming atmosphere that immediately puts travellers at ease.
    The exterior of the inn is made of wood and stone, with a thatched roof and a large sign hanging over the entrance. The sign depicts a graceful nymph dancing in a forest glade, and it swings gently in the breeze.
    As the warband enters the inn, they are greeted by the sound of laughter and conversation. The main room is spacious and well-lit, with a large fireplace at one end that crackles with warmth. There are several tables and chairs scattered throughout the room, and a long bar lines one wall.
    The bar is tended by a friendly fey-blood named Tarek, who greets the warband with a smile and offers them a selection of drinks and meals. The menu includes hearty stews, roasted meats, and freshly baked bread, all made with locally sourced ingredients.
    The rooms at The Dancing Nymph are comfortable and well-appointed, with soft beds and warm blankets. Each room has a window that looks out onto the surrounding, providing a peaceful and serene view.
    The warband settles in for the night, enjoying the warmth and comfort of The Dancing Nymph. They chat with the other travellers and swap stories over drinks and food, feeling grateful for the sense of community and belonging that the inn provides.

    After settling into The Dancing Nymph inn in Fey Wall, the Ravens of Gadun began to establish contacts and gather information about the ratmen horde and their hideout. They knew that they needed allies and support if they were to successfully eliminate the ratmen.
    The warband began by talking to the locals in the hamlet, asking about any potential allies or informants. They were pointed towards a group of hunters who often ventured into the surrounding forest, and who might have valuable information about the ratmen.
    The Ravens of Gadun set out to find the hunters, and after a few hours of searching, they came across a small group of them, led by a grizzled veteran named Roth. The warband approached the hunters and explained their mission, asking for any information or support that they could provide.
    Roth listened carefully to their request and nodded, recognizing the danger that the ratmen posed to the region. He agreed to help the warband, providing them with valuable information about the ratmen hideout and the surrounding terrain.
    As they were about to part ways, one of the warband members, Temir, mentioned that he had sustained an injury during their previous battle. Roth recommended that they visit a nearby healer, who might be able to provide some aid.
    The healer, a wise old woman named Tova, lived in a small cottage on the outskirts of the hamlet. She welcomed the warband and examined Temir’s injury, offering him a salve made from local herbs and roots. She also provided them with advice on how to stay safe in the forest and avoid potential dangers.
    With the information from the hunters and the aid of the healer, the Ravens of Gadun were now better prepared to face the ratmen horde. They set out on their mission with renewed confidence, grateful for the allies and contacts that they had established along the way.

    For Adventuring we’ll be fighting the Gnawling Threat, which we found out that is in the Same Map Area, Counting their Pillage and if we fail they will Gather Information.

    The battle will take place in the Edge of Woods and our Objective is to Secure the Area.

    We’re up against 8 Gnawling Warriors and a Captain, and we failed to Seize Initiative.

    The warband, composed of Omac Gadun, Caldas, Bolga, Temir, and Myrick, approached the edge of the woods where the ratmen were counting their plunder. Despite their planning and preparations, they had failed to seize the initiative, and now the ratmen were fully aware of their presence.
    As they prepared for battle, tension mounted as the two sides stared each other down. The warband knew that they had a tough fight ahead of them, and they needed to act quickly if they were to emerge victorious.
    The ratmen, armed with crude weapons and armor, appeared to be confident in their strength and numbers. The warband would need to use all of their skill and courage to overcome this challenge.
    With battle about to commence, the outcome of this encounter was far from certain.


    ROUND 1

    As the tension mounted, Temir drew his bow and took a shot at the enemy captain. However, his aim was off, and the arrow missed its mark. The ratmen responded by firing their crossbows at Omac and Temir, but their aim was just as poor, and the bolts sailed harmlessly past.
    Myrick, seeing an opportunity, drew his bow and took aim at a ratman in range. He let loose his arrows, but unfortunately, they missed their target by a wide margin. The warband was quickly realizing that this was not going to be an easy fight, and they needed to adjust their tactics if they were to emerge victorious.

    ROUND 1
    ROUND 2

    As the two sides closed in around the pond and through the woods, the ratmen fired their crossbows, managing to incapacitate Bolga with a bolt to the leg. Two ratmen closed in on Omac, but he managed to kill one of them with his bastard sword.
    Myrick and Temir shot their last arrows, but they missed the ratmen approaching around the lake. Caldas managed to wound one of the ratmen with his fencing sword, and Omac followed up with a deadly strike, killing the ratman.
    Despite their losses, the gnawling ratmen were undeterred, and one of them furiously dashed closer to the warband. The warband needed to act fast if they were to fend off this ferocious assault.

    ROUND 2
    ROUND 3

    As the ratmen continued to shoot their crossbows, one of them ran out of ammo while another managed to hit Omac, piercing through his plate armor and wounding him.
    Meanwhile, five ratmen and their captain charged towards Myrick, who engaged them in a bloody melee with his Heartseeker enchanted blade. One by one, he killed them all, leaving a trail of ratmen corpses in his wake.
    On the other side of the woods, Caldas engaged in a one-on-one battle with another ratman, which he managed to dispatch with his fencing sword.
    Seeing the bloodbath and their comrades falling one by one, the last ratman dropped his crude crossbow and fled in terror.
    The warband had emerged victorious, but at a heavy cost. Omac was wounded, and Bolga was incapacitated. They would need to tend to their wounds and regroup before they could continue their journey.

    ROUND 3


    We rolled 6 Adventure Points earned for being Victorious against an Enemy Threat which was spent directly on reducing the Gnawling Threat by 1. Also 1 Adventure Point more for Defeating a Captain. We rolled that one Item was Located, for the Contract thus earning another 1 Adventure Point.
    On the injury rolls, Bolga is dead, and I had to spend my last Story Point to reroll this, and he was only Lightly Wounded.
    Boots, Omac and Temir earned 2 XP each, while Myrick earned 3 XP and Bolga, being the only casualty earned only 1 XP.
    Our Loot roll was a Thief’s Tools, and the Unusual Find was a Longbow which was given to Myrick. Since we stopped the Gnawlings from counting their pillage we earned 1 Gold Mark but no more was given for Securing the Area since we found no valuables.
    Finally, no News Events were rolled.

    After the intense battle against the ratmen, the warband was both relieved and ecstatic to have emerged victorious. Despite Bolga’s injury, they all knew that it could have been much worse, and they were grateful that he would soon be back on his feet.
    As they scoured the battlefield for any spoils of war, they came across a few items that caught their eye. First, they found a longbow, which was in surprisingly good condition considering the chaos of the battle. Omac Gadun, the warband leader, took a closer look and determined that it was a finely crafted weapon, likely made by skilled hands. He knew that it could fetch a good price in the right market.
    Next, they found a single gold mark, which was a valuable currency in the region. They were pleased to have come across it, as it would add to their collective wealth and make their future travels a bit easier.
    But the most exciting find was the piece of the tapestry of Imel that Gare had been seeking. They recognized it immediately, as Gare had shown them a sketch of it before they parted ways. It was a beautiful piece of art, depicting a serene forest scene with vivid colors and intricate details.
    The warband knew that Gare would be thrilled to receive it, and they made a mental note to bring it to him when they next traveled to Newhorn. They understood the importance of keeping their word and helping those in need, especially in a world as dangerous and unpredictable as theirs.
    As they gathered their spoils and tended to Bolga’s wound, the warband couldn’t help but feel a sense of camaraderie and satisfaction. They had faced a daunting challenge and emerged victorious, with new treasures to show for it. But more importantly, they had demonstrated their strength, skill, and loyalty to one another, which would serve them well in the battles and adventures that lay ahead.

    Session Summary

    This was a very short battle lasting only 3 rounds, where we emerged victorious. Having a melee combat skill of +3 is almost certain victory against opponents with less than +2. Right now only extremely strong melee enemies or missile enemies pose a threat to my warband. If the Ravens of Gadun are a spear, Temir and Myrick are the spearhead. There is risk ahead, but I’m quite sure that in most battles, victory will be ensured. Nevertheless, attrition is a real danger. Again, I have no Silvertree Leaf, and I’m just out of Luck Points and Story Points, so any casualties during combat could easily mean the death of another warband member. My next battles will all be revolving around eliminating the Gnawling threat.
    Additionally I’ll add another Endgame condition, which is if we reach 90 Turns (the maximum number at my warband roster). I believe we’ll have won or lost by then, but just in case, I’m putting another safeguard. I don’t want to be tired out by this Five Leagues from the Borderlands (note: currently it’s in the GM’s day sale on DTRPG) campaign, so I’m aiming for completion, while in the meantime, I’m slowly getting my itch for Five Parsecs from Home again.
    Now something else to bear in mind about Solo gaming. Writing blog, after blog of narrative can be exhausting, and truly I was near burnout again. But I love playing the games, and having a nice description that goes along with it. That’s when I discovered ChatGPT. Many of you must have already read about it. I must say I was quite amazed at it. Sometimes it doesn’t give what you want, but most of the time, if you give it proper information it will come with good results.
    All narrative in this particular session was output by ChatGPT, with only minor editing afterwards. Some of the prompts and outputs needed to be re-generated to give a proper result, but I kinda love it.
    Don’t get me wrong; you still need to feed it a proper description of what happened, otherwise it will go wild on it’s own, but it takes away some of the heavy lifting of the player. I can imagine it can be used as a great tool for solo roleplaying as well. You can use the ruleset and solo gaming engine to provide the framework, and AI to provide the narrative. I wouldn’t use AI to provide the results without a framework, because that way, whenever you regenerate a prompt it might feel like cheating.
    I’m certainly going to try it more.

    So for example, here’s what the input of my end was:

    ‘Temir took a shot at the enemy captain with his bow and missed. The ratmen armed with crossbows shot at Omac and Temir and missed. Myrick shot his arrows at a Ratman in range but missed.’

    And the output from ChatGPT was:
    ‘As the tension mounted, Temir drew his bow and took a shot at the enemy captain. However, his aim was off, and the arrow missed its mark. The ratmen responded by firing their crossbows at Omac and Temir, but their aim was just as poor, and the bolts sailed harmlessly past.’

    ‘Myrick, seeing an opportunity, drew his bow and took aim at a ratman in range. He let loose his arrows, but unfortunately, they missed their target by a wide margin. The warband was quickly realizing that this was not going to be an easy fight, and they needed to adjust their tactics if they were to emerge victorious.’

  • giorgis 9:18 pm on February 23, 2023 Permalink | Reply
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    Miniatures pt93 – Orc Horde Expanded 

    A while ago I had gotten the Orc Horde from the Hordes of Things range of Alternative Armies. I loved these miniatures, which I had painted in a different scheme than my usual deep green orcs. Later on Alternative Armies released some more orcs, in resin sprue sets, further expanding the range. I had my eyes on them and their archers, and eventually got them and, after a (long) paint queue, I eventually painted them. Tried to remember the paint scheme I had used back then, and thankfully I had some notes in my previous blog post. I love how they turned out, and as you can see in the group shot, they fit with the metal miniatures perfectly.

    Group shot of metal and resin orcs
    Orc horde
    Orc horde
    Orc horde
    Orc horde
    Orc archer
    Orc archer
    Orc archer
    Orc archer
  • giorgis 10:13 pm on February 20, 2023 Permalink | Reply
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    In the Aristrax Marches – Ep21 

    Previously in the Aristrax Marches, the Ravens of Gadun explored the Bronzewood tunnels, and cleared the fourth level of skeleton defenders. Omac was wounded in battle.

    Turn 32

    No Camp Events were rolled. The Upkeep was at 3 Gold Marks. Boots Foraged for Herbs and got (1) Ironshield Root and we also used Live off the land to offset the upkeep cost.
    Again, I’m attempting the next Delve level, see if I can finish this.

    After rolling n the Wallet Dungeons, the dice were against me. Out of eleven dice, eight dice were 4s, two were 5s and one was a 1. This brought out a very open dungeon layout. Also the enemies were rolled to be Giant Bugs which is no challenge at all for my warband at this point. I expect it to be a walk in the park.
    Due to the nature of this dungeon delve, I’ll give an overall narrative of the entire turn, as after 5 dungeon levels my mind is really taxed in trying to bring out a round by round narrative especially when there was minimal challenge.

    The halfling enters the dungeon first, and moves quickly to the main crossroads, that seems like an old temple. As he steps in, 3 giant spiders come at him from the center of the derleic room. They jump at him, and he cuts down one and wounds another.
    The rest of the warband follows him, just in time as spiders rush in from the three surrounding passages. They pour in from East, South and West. Along with them is a gigantic spider that seems to guide them in, and a wicked corrupt figure with long curved nails holding an ashen staff. Stilda, the bronzewood witch, delving in the dark arts of monster summoning and necromancy. She hangs back behind the score of spiders jumping in front of her.
    The gigantic spider comes at Myrick who uses the Heart Seeker to pierce through the monster’s heart, and kills it in one strike. The wily rogue hacks down 3 more of the beasts. Temir and Caldas come in matching at a close second, killing 3 of them each on their own. Bolga only kills one. The witch tries to cast a summoning spell but fails, and seeing the massacre, runs away as the last remaining spider scatters to the passages.
    The Ravens of Gadun spread around the dungeon to explore anything of interest. Brobern is caught by a pinning trap, and needs Calda’s expertise to be set free, while Temir heads the other way, only to be caught in another trap and set of large stones falls on top of him.


    The warband earns 3 Adventure Points for defeating an enemy Captain and a Unique Foe.
    Temir was only Knocked Out.
    Brobern, Caldas and Bolga earned 1 XP each. Myrick earned 3 XP and Temir earned only 1 XP.
    The entire Loot we rolled was Vital Information, Fine Partial Armour, Furs worth 4 GM, an enchanted Armour – Stout Defender!, and a Handful of Coins worth 3 GM. Temir will get the Fine Partial Armour and Myrick will get the Stout Defender. The Vital Information was revealed to be the Gnawling Hideout which is at the Fey Wall hamlet.
    We had no News Events occuring, and the Delve is finally finished!

    The Ravens dig Temir out in time, without any injury, he was merely rendered unconscious. As they gather together their finds from the dungeon, they realize that the tunnels have been cleared out. Bronzewood will be free for now, until Stilda resurfaces again. Among the loot there are gold marks, a fine set of brigandine armour, furs, and a set of finely woven mail, soft like silk. It must have been the Stout Defender, the armor of legends, and it fits Myrick perfectly. Caldas brings out a set of notes that Stilda dropped on her way out. In it she recounts that the ratmen have set up a hideout near Fey Wall, the small hamlet to the East of the Aristrax Marches. He smiles knowing that Omac will be glad of the news that will be delivered to him. They can finally leave this forsaken place and continue with their quests.

    Mid Session Summary

    Finishing through the dungeon took way longer than I expected, and was repetitive. I learned some lessons along the way, that I’d like to share here:
    Delves use the Lurking Foes table, but a lot more fights can occur compared to say eliminating a threat, therefore, to make things interesting, climb through the list instead of rolling. Otherwise you’ll end up facing the same foe more than once (I fought skeleton defenders at least 3 times that I can recall, and giant bugs at least 2 times). Alternatively, use an escalating difficulty modifier of say +5 for each Delve depth beyond the first.
    Irrespective of the use of miniatures or theatre of the mind, using a dungeon generation tool like Wallet Dungeons can really help set the scene. This game I ended up with a quite boring dungeon that I could have rerolled, but the odds of that are low. Especially the extra bits like locked doors, traps, room descriptions and themes really add to the immersion.
    Torches and monsters are something else that could be houseruled inside delves to add more spice. I know I said in the last session that I’d add torches, but the whole thing ended up being another grind here that I didn’t want to do the extra work to make it happen.

    The warband is very strong now. Bar ranged enemies, there are only a few enemy types that pose a significant threat. I don’t want to reach invincible status yet by grinding through even more enemies, so I’ll be going to a town to sell the accumulated loot, and then move to the Quest Finale for the Parchments of Ugmal that I lost in my first attempts. 8 Grave Walkers with all their leaders and an extra Unique Foe will meet their equals.

    Turn 33

    No Camp Events were rolled. The Upkeep was at 2 Gold Marks. Bolga failed on his Hunting Expediation and we also used Live off the land to offset the upkeep cost. Omac is back on his feet, fully healed.

    Boots brings the news of the Gnawling Horde hideout location to the Beard.
    “We have cleared out the Bronzewood tunnels.” He says. “The witch that took residence down below is gone, but we found this.” The halfling hands over the notes to Omac.
    “Excellent!” the Raven smiles. “I’ll be in fighting shape soon, and with the tunnels cleared out we can move out.”
    Omac turns to the rest of the warband. “We shall return back to the place of our failure, but this time we shall be victorious! Ugmal must be destroyed once and for all!”
    He looks at the stash they have gathered. The Ravens also wonder what will happen to all these items. Omac continues. “I suppose a short stop at Newhorn wouldn’t be a bad idea.”

    On the way to Newhorn we met with a Sociable Soldier who gave us a Contract Offer coming from Townsfolk to Locate Item for a reward worth 3 Gold Marks.
    Let’s see what Donjon gives: Balda: Male Human Fighter, Neutral. Balda is fair in appearance, with cropped copper hair and bright grey eyes. He wears banded mail and wields a battle axe and dagger. Balda is searching for a legendary blade named Spiritcleaver.

    At Newhorn we delivered the letter to Mina and got +1 Gold Marks.
    Arriving at Newhorn, we sold:

    • 6 Partial Armours
    • 2 Camp Gears
    • 2 Self Bows
    • 2 Light Armours
    • 3 Bastard Swords
    • 2 Standard Weapons
    • 2 Warhammers
    • 1 Shield
    • 1 Fencing Sword
    • 2 Strange Maps
    • Furs worth 4 Gold Marks
    • Animal pelts worth 2 Gold Marks
    • 2 Sacks of Grain
    • Bag of Foreign Coins worth 3 Gold Marks

    For a total earning of 34 Gold Marks.
    No News Events were rolled.

    Just outside of Newhorn they meet up with a man wearing Duke Gauwill’s colours.
    He closes in to the Ravens, weapons sheathed, and waves to them in a friendly manner. He is fair in appearance, has cropped copper hair and bright grey eyes. He is wearing banded mail, and has sheathed a battle axe and a dagger.
    “You’re the Ravens of Gadun, right?” He says. “I’ve heard you help the common folk. My name’s Gare. I’m looking for a small piece of tapestry depicting Imel’s demise. Legend says that the tapestry gives clues to the location of the legendary Spiritcleaver blade. It may be just a fairy tale, but I promised my late brother that I would continue his quest. If you happen to come upon it, I’m willing to pay the equivalent of 3 Marks if you bring it to me. I’m situated over at Newhorn, part of the Duke’s guard.”
    “That’s a fair offer.” Omac replies.
    Once they arrive at Newhorn, the Ravens immediately head for the inn. Caldas brings the letter to Mina. She reads it and cries.
    “In Bronzewood tunnels you say?” she asks. Caldas nods, and gently taps her shoulder. “And you cleared them of the evil that stayed there?”
    “That we did.” the halfling answers.
    She gives a small pouch of coins. “For your trouble and my thanks. I won’t take no for an answer.”
    Caldas knows better than to argue with her, and accepts the reward.
    Omac is about to make arrangements for their accomodation, when two groups of people take note of the huge stash that they brought in the cart outside.
    “Hey, Master Gadun!” a man wearing a cloak with the heraldry of a lantern calls out to him. “Are you willing to let go of any of these weapons and armour? We’ll pay well.”
    “If the Lanterns of Ariel won’t need the entire stash, then we, the Crusaders of Cawold would like a fair split. Our gold is good as well.” A woman from another group shouts.
    Omac smiles. Their quests seem to have inpired other adventuring parties in the region as well! He turns to them. “Seems like we have ourselves some customers. I think there’s enough to go around for both of your parties! My man, Myrick here will make arrangements of the trade to make sure you get a fair price.”
    Temir takes the valuables to the market and sells them, and for once, with all these sales, the Ravens of Gadun have enough coin to finance the next steps of their adventure.

    Turn 34

    No Camp Events were rolled. I think I’ll drop the house rule to reduce the number of Events. The Upkeep was at 2 Gold Marks. We Repaired Brobern’s Helmet for 1 Gold Mark and spent an Activity to Meet the Locals and had a Brief Chat. On the Trade step we purchased a Repair Kit worth 6 Gold Marks. For Adventuring we have to go to the Quest Finale which is at the Blighted Vale.

    After a few days at the Weasel’s Cellar, the warband has removed the stench of the Bronzewood tunnels. They are clean and rested. They spent some time chatting with the locals, purchasing some tools, and repairing their armour – Brobern in particular wanted to have the big dent in his helmet fixed, so that he could wear it again, and then Omac orders them to pack up and head back on the way of their first big loss. They step off towards the Blighted Vale.

    On the way to the Blighted Vale, we met with a Generous Knight who gave us a Ration and became a Friend. I rolled randomly on Donjon and got the following entry: Damay: Female Halfling Fighter, Good. Damay has curly blonde hair and sharp amber eyes, and a magical scar on her face. She wears plate mail and wields a military pick and heavy crossbow. Damay has an animal companion, a black wolf named Adoc.

    The warband is making a short camp in the countryside when a short figure, clad in plate appears in the distance. A black wolf is beside her.
    “Who goes there?” Yells Brobern as he points his crossbow towards her.
    The stranger lifts her helmet visor and pats her wolf. “May I share in the company of your camp? I bring food.”
    Brobern looks at Omac who nods in agreement. They sense no danger from a single stranger. “Come friend and warm yourself by our fire.” Brobern adds. “I’m Brobern, and we’re the Ravens of Gadun.”
    “I’m Damay. Roving Knight of the Aristrax Marches. This is my friend Adoc.” She points to her black wolf companion. “I’ve heard of your deeds Ravens. Your presence here has certainly helped.” She replies as she comes by the fire.
    The halfling knight removes her helmet, and her curly blonde hair fan out. Sharp amber eyes pierce through the souls of the warband as she eyes them carefully, but what really stands out of her appearance, is a scar running down her jaw. There’s something different about it, as it doesn’t look like i was made from a blade during combat. Black veins surround it as if whatever caused it was not of mundane nature. She does not speak about it, and none of the Ravens raise the topic.
    The evening was pleasant as they exchanged news and stories. Come morning the Ravens have earned another friend. She shares some of her food for the way, and they bid each other farewell.
    The warband continues on their way, and sooner rather than later, they reach the Blighted Vale. None of them speak, as the memory of Lady Liana perishing at the hands of the Grave Walkers still haunts them. They draw their weapons, and silently, they make their approach.

    The Combat

    According to the Quest Finale rules, for the second attempt, the same enemies appear with any casualties replaced. Since I had a Duskling Champion Unique Foe that had died, I decided to revive him, as Undead this time. Any Grave Walkers will be added as well. During Caldas’ First Move, I got a result of The Foe Lurks so I added an additional Unknown Enemy Marker. For ease of play, I decided to reveal them and make them an additional enemy group.
    I recreated the same table as from the previous attempt, but I randomly determined the entry approach and the enemy group locations on the table.

    ROUND 1

    Omac Gadun guided the Ravens from a different approach, in an attempt to catch the Grave Walkers by surprise, but soon after Caldas stepped in first, the undead detected the presence of the living and turned towards the warband.
    The two sides close in one to another.

    ROUND 1
    ROUND 2

    The halfling notices that the duskling champion, … who they had killed previously is back on his feet. A green shine in his eyesockets, a stale look upon his flesh, the wound gash still open. Who knows what unliving force animated him. Boots doesn’t pause to think it over for long. He loads a stone in his sling and shoots at him, crushing several bones, but the undead duskling is still standing.
    The grave walkers close in, and Bolga intercepts them. He attacks the enemy lieutenant, but his foe is skilled and deflects the strike, and wounds and stuns Bolga, sending him stumbling back.
    Temir jumps down the cliffside and attacks the undead duskling with the Heartseeker. Two consecutive strikes cut through armour, and the duskling is decapitated, finished once and for all.
    Myrick shoots his arrows to the lieutenant but misses by a long shot. Brobern has loaded his crossbow and follows up with a bolt to the lieutenant’s ribs, crushing several of them.
    Omac notices his wounded companion and casts a healing spell to Bolga. The duskling warrior is rejuvenated.

    ROUND 2
    ROUND 3

    Bolga attacks back the grave walker lieutenant, with renewed strength. His cleaver falls down on the enemy, and cuts him in half, bones crumbling down. Unfortunately another walker follows up, and harms Bolga, twice, the duskling falls.
    Temir is has the cliff behind him, and is cornered by the rest of the grave walkers who close on him, among them a sergeant, but he manages to stop their attacks. He charges back at them trying to fend them off, but as he wounds one of them, he’s wounded in the process as well.
    The warband decides to use missile weapons to attack the approaching enemies. Caldas, Myrick and Brobern all shoot at the grave walkers, destroying one of them.
    Omac cannot cast another healing spell, so he goes to the side of the cliff, and with the wounded enemy facing Temir, he casts a spell to bring him down, hoping that the unholy force that keeps him together, will eventually seep out.

    ROUND 3
    ROUND 4

    Myrick and Brobern again shoot at the approaching grave walkers and destroy yet another one. Boots finds that the enemy is too close, and draws his fencing sword, but as they clash, there is no victor. The skeleton attacks back and the halfling pushes him away.
    The wounded Temir is cornered by two walkers. He blocks the sergeant’s attacks, but the other walker stuns him, and with a following strike, incapacitates the Ox.
    Omac notices the enemy approaching by the ledge, and prepares himself, casting a fortune spell to assist him in the imminent close combat.

    ROUND 4
    ROUND 5

    The grave walker tries to kill Boots, but the halfling dodges back, and with the necessary distance, he shoots his sling to the enemy, missing unfortunately.
    Myrick and Brobern also shoot at the walkers, but they miss this time, and Brobern runs out of bolts.
    Omac engages in combat with the battered skeleton, but his foe’s armour is tough, and Omac can’t harm the undead creature.

    ROUND 5
    ROUND 6

    Omac renews his fortune spell, just in time as he’s attacked by the skeletons. Not even his magics can save him from the animated skeletons, and despite being saved by his plate armour twice, the third strike goes through, and the Beard is wounded.
    Boots is surrounded by the enemy, the sergeant and a walker come at him, and he blocks their attacks. He attacks back, but he doesn’t manage to hurt them either.
    Myrick notices the enemy captain behind the number of enemies in front of him. Only if he manages to get through, they have a chance against them. A walker attacks Myrick and he skillfully blocks the attack, striking back and with the Heartseeker wounding him. He goes on the offensive and destroys the walker.
    Empowered by his companion, Brobern, the young runaway, joins the fray. What he faces makes him reconsider and realize how Lady Liana might have perished against such a foe. The walkers are much stronger than anything he has faced before. They retain the skills they had in their previous life, they’re not mere automatons like the ones he faced in the Bronzewood tunnels. The grave walker blocks Brobern’s attack, and strikes back, twice, Brobern only parrying the strikes with his shield.

    ROUND 6
    ROUND 7

    The Ravens are in a bad spot. They have no opportunity to push their powerful foes back, as they’re funneled back to their entrance point.
    Boots attacks the enemy sergeant, and is wounded as he does so. His opponent strikes back, and they exchange several blows, until finally, the tired halfling falls under the blade of his tireless opponent.
    Two grave walkers attack the Beard. He fends off the first, but fails to repel the second, and the leader of the warband falls next to his companions. At the same time Brobern is attacked over and over, and wounded twice, he joins the same fate.
    Myrick is the only man standing. With the heartseeker at hand, and wearing the stout defender, he feels that with his skill he still stands a chance. A grave walker attacks him, and he cuts it down. Then the enemy captain challenges him, and despite trying to deliver a killing blow, he only manages to push him back. He turns to the offensive, but the skeleton captain counter attacks disregarding the rogue’s strike. The rusty flamberge injures Myrick who falls in one swift motion.

    ROUND 7


    The warband earns 3 Adventure Points for defeating an enemy Lieutenant and a Unique Foe.
    On the injury rolls, Caldas had Item Damage which is the Throwing Knives, Omac got Moderately Injured for 6 Turns, I’ll spend his Luck Point and remove the result. Brobern and Bolga both got a Dead result, after careful consideration I’ve used my only Springtree Leaf on Bolga (sorry Brobern) and at the reroll he was only Knocked Out. Brobern’s Bastard Sword was also damaged in the process, and we earn a Story Point. Temir was Lightly Injured for 3 Turns and Myrick would also have been Dead if not for his Helmet which saved his life.
    Myrick, Caldas and Omac earned 1 XP each. Temir and Bolga earned 2 XP for killing enemy leaders as well.
    Temir and Myrick also Leveled Up, with Temir earning the Devotion skill and Myrick 1 Luck Point.
    Since this was an astounding defeat, we earned no Loot.
    We had no News Events occuring, and the Quest has come to an end.

    Myrick slowly stumbles back up… his helmet has a big gap were the flamberge cut. He was saved by this trusty piece of armour. He looks around, the walkers are nowhere to be seen. He sees Boots recovering as well, carefully touching his own body to see if he’s okay and finding out that only his set of throwing knives was damaged. They run to the rest of the warband. Omac by luck only was saved. A flesh wound that will heal, just one inch away from a major artery. Temir is in a worse state, his weapon arm injured, but he’ll be back in fighting shape sooner or later. Bolga? Brobern? Myrick runs to Brobern as Boots runs to the duskling. They’re both bleeding profusely. Boots immediately puts some silvertree leaf poultice to Bolga’s wound, while Myrick tries to bandage the young runaway. Within a few minutes Bolga is recovering by the healing power of the leaf, but Brobern seems to worsen. His life force slowly fades as his blood drains away to the ground. Despite their best efforts, the young warrior is dead. Sorrow overcomes the Ravens, and then Omac asks…
    “The Parchments? Where are the Parchments?”
    Caldas looks into his satchel, and they’re nowhere to be found. They scout the battlefield, and they see a huge gap in the earth where something or rather someone used to be.
    A feeling of despair overcomes them. They have failed their task.

    Session Summary

    I grossly overestimated my warband’s strength, and went in guns blazing, no tactical oversight. The layout didn’t help either, with the enemy captain being so far away from my starting place. Additionally I forgot once more to use the magic potions in my arsenal.
    We lost once more the replacement hero. Is the slot doomed to failure?
    Furthermore I have to decide how to deal with Ugmal resurfacing, as it doesn’t feel right to only keep it as a narrative descriptor without any mechanical implications.
    I initially was thinking of having Ugmal as an aberration, and resurface the Whispers of Beyond Threat, but I quickly realized that this would be a total mood killer for me as a player and I might quit the campaign in the long run due to desperation. Instead, I’ll have him slowly gather his forces in hiding, and resurface in the future, in a second campaign.

    I was worried that I had reached a power level in Five Leagues from the Borderlands 3rd Edition where the enemies would no longer pose a threat. I am happy or not happy to state that this is not the case yet. Finally I’d like to point out that I’m slowly expanding my Rolescape entry with more maps (one for each settlement now) and information. The Aristrax marches are being fleshed out.

  • giorgis 4:34 pm on February 14, 2023 Permalink | Reply
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    Miniatures pt92 – (Not)-Elf Heroes 

    Due to a package taking the scenic route to arrive (several months), I had ended up reordering the [Elf Heroes]( Alternative Armies and had two packages of them.

    I don’t like having double poses in my skirmish games, but in most cases I can do away with uniform troops looking alike. In this case however this wasn’t possible so I went ahead and modified the second pack. Mostly an experiment with Greenstuff, filing, cutting and pinning. Some look better than the others, and it was a learning experience. I’ll definitely feel more at home next time I do this.

    I can use them as elf mercenaries or even not elves, but generic mercenaries in fantasy.

    Some words on modifications I attempted:

    I modified the existing poses by bending the hands in different positions. I also bent the bastard sword into a flamberge.

    I added a Polearm head into a spear. Made a few axes double headed. These were done with pewter sprues that I pinned and glued into place using a 1mm drill.

    I added shields that I had from Battle Valor to any figures armed with 1-handed weapons. These also were pinned in place.

    I cut off the elongated parts helmets and tried different designs. Some look better than others.

    I used greenstuff to add cloaks, hoods and helmet visors, as well as making a breastplate, a banded cuirass and a leather cuirass.

    Overall I learned a lot about greenstuff, and I am both amazed at the possibilities and awed at the skill required by the professional sculptors to produce miniatures. I am definitely gonna keep working with greenstuff as it’s really fun to do.

    Modified Miniature
    Modified Miniature
    Modified Miniature
    Modified Miniature
    Modified Miniature
    Modified Miniature
    Modified Miniature
    Modified Miniature
    Modified Collage
    Original Collage
  • giorgis 1:53 pm on February 5, 2023 Permalink | Reply
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    In the Aristrax Marches – Ep20 

    Previously in the Aristrax Marches, the Ravens of Gadun explored the Bronzewood tunnels, and cleared the third level of skeleton defenders.

    As I said in the previous session, I’ll be changing some things to make the session more interesting.
    First of all, I want to add some more narrative, because I feel like there’s some narrative drought in my latest sessions (which is to be expected in a dungeon delve). So I’ll add the Connections mechanic from Book Of Legends and Deeds.
    Secondly, because of the repetitiveness of setting up a dungeon table every time, with only so much variety, I’m going to turn to Wallet Dungeons. This will give me a quick map that I can easily set up, with a lot of information like room type, passage types and extra bits.
    It’s combat is going to be mapped, not theatre of the mind, but not miniatures either (though I’m going to take a few photos for extra immersion). Therefore I need some rules set beforehand to make it work.

    • The number of rooms (dice) rolled will equal 6 + Delve Level. It’s important to have more rooms than exploration markers, and a big enough dungeon to make sense. I feel like this number will work.
    • Moving between rooms may require a Move Roll:
    • A Move Roll is required to Move between Open Doorways passage types or more difficult. Each difficulty level applies a -1 Penalty.
    • A successful Move Roll is done by rolling 1d6 equal to or below the modified Move Score (There’s a -1 Penalty for being in a Delve)
    • If the previous Move Roll in the same Move attempt was a failure, no Move Roll is required.
    • Anyone inside a room can attack anyone else in the same room. All defenders gain a Combat Bonus provided there is at least another capable defender in the same room.
    • Phases work normally. If you moved in one phase you cannot attack, but can be attacked.
    • Extra bits provided by the dungeon (e.g. traps/locks/secrets) will require a successful test to resolve.
    • Enemies move in Groups as defined by placement rules.
    • Each room cannot have more than one Exploration Marker.
    • LOS is maintained through Open Doorways, Fully Open passages and Merged rooms.
    • Enemies become Aware if there is combat in adjacent rooms

    Turn 31

    In BOLD I rolled the following:

    • Proclaim, Lying, an Annoyance
    • Examine, Detailing, a Skill
    • Command, Excluding, Personal Qualities

    No Camp Events were rolled. The Upkeep was at 1 Gold Mark. Boots Foraged for Herbs and got (1) Silvertree Leaf and Bolga returned from a Hunting Expedition with (4) Rations.
    Again, I’m attempting the next Delve level, see if I can finish this.

    The stench of the stale air of the tunnels has seeped into the Ravens of Gadun. They’re used to it. They’ve started to forget what sunlight is like. Yet Omac is not keen on stopping yet. Once Caldas and Bolga return from hunting and foraging, he gives yet again the go signal, and they delve deeper.


    I rolled 10 dice, and came up with the following dungeon map. Going from top to down, and then from left to right, the rooms in order are:

    1. Trapped Jail
    2. Damp Arboretum
    3. Opulent Library
    4. Opulent Gallery (North)
    5. Opulent Gallery (Mid)
    6. Opulent Gallery (South)
    7. Library with Hidden Alcove
    8. Pristine Crypts
    9. Crumbling Store Room
    10. Quarters with Secret Exit
    Wallet Dungeon Map

    I rolled randomly our entry point and it’s Room 7, the library.
    Caldas did his first move moving to Room 8, and found some Suspicious Tracks, which means I’ll add a Unique Foe to Room 5.
    I rolled that there are Exploration Markers in all rooms except Room 4, Room 6 and Room 7.
    The enemy is rolled to be 9 Skeleton Defenders and their Captain. They’re divided in 3 Groups of 3 each. Group 1 also includes the Captain.
    Group 1 starts at Room 2.
    Group 2 starts at Room 4.
    Group 3 starts at Room 8.

    Boots succeeds on Wits test to discover the Hidden Alcove.
    The Exploration Marker of Room 8 revealed an Item, which is another Strange Map.

    The Ravens enter a dusty room with crumbling bookshelves – all the books seem to have turned to dust.
    Boots notices a hidden alcove in one of the walls, but what really draws his attention is a set of footprints in the dusty floor. He lies down on the floor, his face touching the cold stone to examine them, but all he manages to get is dust in his nostrils and he barely suppresses a cough.
    He heads south as the room opens to a cryp and all of a sudden three skeletal figures come to motion, weapons drawn against him.

    This way I scratched off the BOLD connection “Explore, Lying, an Annoyance”.

    Round 1

    ‘Bolga fails his Move roll to follow Boots through the Fully Open passage. The enemy Group 1 want to stay to Room 2, but the Group 2 moves to Room 5. Temir, Omac, Myrick and Brobern attempt to Move to Room 5 through the Unlocked Door, but only Omac Succeeds.’

    The Exploration Marker of Room 5 revealed Footsteps. An additional skeleton is added to Room 3, which is connected via an Open Doorway.
    I rolled up the Unique Foe, which turned out to be a Ruthless Killer whose goals coincide with the skeletons…

    His quick fencing blade at hand, Caldas engages all his enemies. The slow moving skeletons are no match for him, and he fells two of them, and leaving the third in a state of disrepair.

    Omac heads east, opening a door and reaching a huge hall. It must have been a gallery, as exquisite frames cover the walls, having held paintings in times past.
    In the centre of the hall, a few yards away from him are standing three skeletons, and a ruthless killer known as Drarder. A man infamous for murders in the Aristrax Marches.
    “Your gruesome skill with the executioner’s axe won’t help you here Drarder!” Omac proclaims. “Your time has come to an end. You shall face justice!”
    Who knows why the skeleton defenders don’t attack Drarder. Perhaps he’s reeking of so much death that they consider him to be one of their own.

    And with this I scratched off the BOLD connection “Proclaim, Detailing, a Skill”.

    Round 2

    Temir and Brobern take their place besides the Raven. The trio stands against Drarder and his Skeleton friends. Omac casts a Binding spell to the skeletons and they stand motionless against the wall. The murderer accepts the challenge and attacks Omac who is on the defensive with his staff. He misses his first attack, but his next strike hits. His axe cutting through armour and flesh alike, and the Beard is down in onen hit!
    Myrick enters the gallery just as Omac falls. He screams in anguish, vowing revenge. Bolga changes course and instead of following Boots turns to join the fight in the hall.

    In the crypts, the halfling and the skeleton fight it out, with Boots eventually destroying his foe.

    ‘Note: having a Mystic casualty with an active spell is a curious case. After asking Ivan on the discord, I got the answer that the spell wouldn’t fizzle. Nevertheless I decided to stop it after the Quick Phase of the next Round and not let it go the entire Round. Also… I forgot to roll for the skeletons to see if they break their spell. Wouldn’t make much of a difference though. Mistakes were made.’

    ‘As for the movement of the enemy Groups, both failed their initial Move Rolls, so they remain at their current position for this turn and will be able to move without a Move Roll in the next turn.’

    Round 3

    Temir extends his arm with the Heartseeker pointing to Drarder. Another challenge is made, and this time the murderer has found his master at combat. The first slash from Temir cuts a gashing wound in Drarder’s left arm. Blood spews out. He loses momentum and Temir comes in with a thrust right at his belly. The life fades from Drarder’s eyes, as he drops to the floor with a thud.
    The skeletons, slowly come at the Ravens. Brobern wounds one, while Temir wounds another and decapitates one more.
    Myrick charges at the skeletons, destroying one that Temir left damaged. The heartseeker blades make short work of the rusty skeleton armours.

    Boots having cleared the crypt from his enemies, moves to east. He enters what feels like a store room in a precarious state, as the supports are crumbling. Through an open doorway further to the east he can see three more skeletons standing around a pile of items. ‘Loot’ he thinks, and decides to move on.

    ‘Maybe I should have used the state as something to interpret mechanically. Either as difficult ground or a need to avoid falling rubble. I’ll keep this in mind.’

    ‘Movement of the enemy Groups is complete in this turn, as the generated skeleton defender enters the main hall and Group 1 enters Room 3 (Opulent Library).

    Round 4

    The fight goes on in the main hall. Swords clash together. A skeleton attacks Temir who quickly dispatches it, and then enemy reinforcements arrive. Three more skeletons and their leader. Their grim and menacing appearance does not deter the brave Ravens. Temir and Bolga both engage the skeleton leader. But he’s too strong and wounds Bolga with his rusty blade. Brobern and Myrick exchange blows with the rest of the skeletons but don’t score a hit.

    Boots continues further eastward and enters what must have been the quarters of the guards once stationed there. He feels like something is off, and wants to search further, but first he’ll have to deal with the task at hand – eliminate the enemy.

    ‘As explained, during this round, enemy Group 1, made a Move Roll successfully and entered the main hall. The Skeleton Captain and three more Skeletons will fight the Ravens.

    Round 5

    The halfling fights the three skeletons, wounding one of them and managing to stay unharmed in the process.

    The skeleton leader challenges Bolga. The duskling tries his best, but he misjudges the attack and with a second wound, he falls.
    The rest of the skeleton group attacks Brobern and Temir, and the skilled warrior destroys two of them.
    He and Myrick flank the enemy leader, and Myrick scores a wounding hit against him, but with Bolga’s fall, their defensive line is broken, and as Brobern fights another skeleton, he is striken down.

    Round 6

    The skeleton leader’s broken bones reattach themselves, as if by an unknown force. Temir has faced such foes before. He charges in and breaks the bones again, and with another strike from the Heartseeker, the cuts the skeleton’s skull vertically in half, and it drops motionless to the ground. Another animated skeleton attacks Temir, who turns in an instant and blocks the attack and strikes back, destroying it.
    Myrick attacks and eliminates the last of the skeletons in the gallery. Temir looks at him. “They were no match for our magical swords combined. We will lead this warband to victory.”

    And with this I finished the last BOLD connection “Commend, Excluding, Personal Quality”.

    Boots is attacked by the skeletons in the east quarters. As he pushes back one of them and destroys it, another strikes from behind the little folk. Caldas drops.

    Round 7

    Temir and Myrick are the last members of the Ravens standing. The Ox turns to Myrick. “Let’s split to cover move ground. I’ll head Westwards, you go Eastwards, see what else this place hides.” Myrick agrees, and they take each their own path.
    Temir enters another library, but he can tell for sure that this was much more important that the one they first went through. The crumbling books have silver linings and velvet covers. He is certain that there will be something of worth in here, so he sets on searching.

    ‘Temir succeeded in his Move Roll and entered Room 3, while Myrick failed so he’ll enter Room 7 next turn.’

    Round 8

    Temir finds some tapestries. They’re not in very good shape, but there are parts that are still fine. He considers they’ll be of value when they sell them in a city.

    ‘Temir was successful in his Scouting Roll, but I rolled that there was a Sack of Grain. Instead I switched to Tapestries as it would make more sense for an Opulent Library for the same value of 1 Gold Mark.’

    Round 9

    Temir enters a room that must have been used to collect herbs. Perhaps this whole place was a wizard’s den. Dead plants cover the walls. Fungi and mushrooms have grown over the place. The moisture inside leaves a mark on the air, that is heavy and hard to breathe. Temir regains his senses and through the damp air makes out another trio of skeletons moving towards him. They seem to have been guarding a pile of items, and as soon as Solas entered the room, they became animated.

    ‘Temir made a successful Move Roll to Room 2, and Myrick made a successful Move Roll to Room 8.’

    Round 10

    Three skeletons close in on Temir and three skeletons are destroyed. He kicks back, and slashes out, ducks and thrusts, dodges and strikes. Each time a skeleton falls, until there is a pile of bones around him. His skill with the blade delivered once more. He searches through the pile, and finds a set of weapons. A curious find for the location he’s at, but he’s happy with the loot. A bastard sword, a crossbow and a set of throwing knives.

    ‘Myrick successfully moves to Room 9, and he’s almost to the place where Caldas fell.’

    Round 11

    The entrance to the last room to the west is a cell door. It is unlocked. Temir enters inside, and sees manacles fastened to the stone brick walls. A motionless skeleton wearing rags and holding a bastard sword lies down on the floor. Perhaps whoever was imprisoned here made an escape, killing his captor in the way out.

    Myrick enters the eastern quarters, and the two skeletons standing on top of the incapacitated halfling turn to him and close in.

    ‘I completely forgot about the characteristic of Room 1. I must be more careful next time, as it would be even more interesting.’

    Round 12

    The skeletons attack Myrick, but this Raven is as skilled as his equal, Temir. He dodges and ducks, and slashes and jabs, and the skeletons are destroyed. He then proceeds to place Caldas carefully on the side to recover and searches what the skeletons were guarding. He finds a variety of items including a Ferret’s Drink potion, Springwind berries and a mail cuirass. Something grabs his attention as he does so, and he finds a secret passage out of there behind a rotten curtain. Some ironshield root has grown there, and he harvests it and puts it in his pouch.

    ‘The Secret exit part of this room would be interesting if I had to make a quick route out of there. There was no need to do it now, so I didn’t use it.’


    The warband earns 2 Adventure Points for the Suspicious Tracks resolved, and 2 Adventure Points for defeating an enemy Captain and a Unique Foe.
    Omac suffered a Gruesome injury (-5) and was Lightly Injured for 2 Turns of Recovery.
    Caldas and Bolga were Knocked Out.
    Brobern suffered Item Damage to his Helmet.
    Omac, Brobern, Caldas and Bolga earned 1 XP each. Myrick earned 2 XP and Temir earned 4 XP as he delivered the finishing blow to both Drarder and the Skeleton Captain.
    On Loot we rolled a Bag Full of Foreign Coins worth 3 Gold Marks, and in Unusual Finds we find a Strange Sack containing Fey Steel Full Armour.
    We had no News Events occuring, and the Delve isn’t finished yet, and has more levels to explore.

    Caldas, Bolga and Brobern stand back to their feet. A bit dizzy, but they’re not injured. Brobern was saved by his helmet. The warband turns their attention to their leader who was wounded by Drarder’s serrated axe. The wound was not too deep, so he’ll recover in about a couple of weeks.
    Despite this small setback they’re excited. They found several weapons, armour and gear in the dungeon that will surely assist them in their adventures. A couple of bastard swords, Rahyrstian coins, throwing knives, a crossbow, a magic potion, but most importantly, another set of fey maille armour. Brobern takes the crossbow and gives his quick dagger to Bolga, while Caldas takes the set of throwing knives.

    Session Summary

    Same enemy, another delve level, repetitive? No! I absolutely loved this change of pace, and I’m confident I’m on the right track to handling my delves. I’ll certainly try to remember the extra tags for each room, and I’m thinking of adding some more traditional RPG dungeon crawl elements.
    I want to make use of Torches. I’m thinking of extra rules about it. Perhaps give a Combat Bonus to the side that doesn’t have their visibility impaired in each Room. This will mean that the warband member who carries a Torch won’t be able to hold a Bulky weapon or a Shield.
    Another thing I want to implement is to have a random number of enemies on the Guarded Stash roll. Maybe I’ll use the Unknown Enemies table to reveal the number of enemies guarding a stash.
    I also want the opportunity to hunt a Monster in a delve, but maybe this will have to wait for later. Five Leagues from the Borderlands has specific connections between the different Scenario Types and I don’t want to break anything. I’ll consider this carefully, but I really like the idea of minions protecting a big bad monster, so perhaps there’s a way to connect these without breaking anything.
    On the execution of the hack with Wallet Dungeons, I must say that there was nothing that felt wrong. It integrated with the core rules quite well, and the fights were interesting, while the bookkeeping was light. I had an overview of where the fights were taking place, and the time it took to clear the dungeon was acceptable.

    Furthermore it became clear to me that I need more terrain props to populate my dungeon and help with immersion. Sarcophagi, torch holders, columns, bookshelves, I will have to make some.

    On the strength of the warband, I’m feeling that Temir and Myrick are becoming unstoppable. The +3 Combat Skill cannot be reckoned with easily. The Heartseeker is also important against armored opponents as it can increase the odds of a successful hit by up to 50%. Perhaps the warband is now strong enough to attempt the quest I left unfinished.
    Nevertheless the rest of the warband isn’t that strong yet. Despite fighting against a quite enemy – that is skeleton defenders – all but Temir and Myrick perished, and I was just lucky in my injury rolls to have no dead. Omac paid his insolence of challenging such a strong enemy.
    I decided not to use either the Silvertree leaf or Omac’s Luck point and take the hit of losing him for the next couple of sessions, as I might need these later on.

  • giorgis 10:04 pm on February 1, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: ,   

    In the Aristrax Marches – Ep19 

    Previously in the Aristrax Marches, the Ravens of Gadun explored the Bronzewood tunnels, and cleared the second level of tomb shades.

    Turn 30

    No Camp Events were rolled. The Upkeep was at 2 Gold Marks, and I decided that we should Live off the land as one of the Campaign Activities. Boots is completely recovered, while Bolga performed a successful Hunting Expedition returning with animal pelts worth 2 Gold Marks.
    I really want to scratch off a Delve from my campaign map, so I’m trying for the next Delve level.

    Omac takes a close look at each and everyone of them. Temir and Myrick are testing their bowstrings, Bolga is sharpening his cleaver on a stone, Brobern is fixing the straps on his shield and Caldas trying out his fencing routine. They’re ready, full strength. The Bronzewood tunnels will be cleared. He gives the go command and they all follow, deeper into the cavern complex.


    Our first move by Boots, revealed that there are Undiscovered Depths, and I’ll add 3 additional Exploration Markers! at he table.
    As for the enemy, I initially rolled Winged Imps, since I’m playing with miniatures and I don’t have anything suitable, I decided to roll again, getting Skeleton Defenders, more Undead it is! It is 7 of them.
    I failed to apply the Delve modifiers for the 3rd level, which would add one additional Skeleton Defender and an Exploration Marker. Noted for the next session.

    As the Ravens walk deeper into the caves, they hear bones clack and click against each other. The noise is familiar now, and they all draw their weapons. The undead will be destroyed!

    ROUND 1

    Boots walks quickly among the narrow places of the dungeon and searching through an old container, he finds a strange map, still intact, and quickly puts it inside his cloak.

    ROUND 1
    ROUND 2

    Boots comes at an intersection. He sees skeletons aproaching from the East, but he turns left to the North, as Bolga and Temir come from behind to face them.

    ROUND 2
    ROUND 3

    Boots turns left again, and notices something is amiss in the room. He has to search it.
    Further south, at the intersection, Bolga charges at a skeleton, and with two hits, he destroys it, the bones clanging on the stone floor.
    Two more skeletons come at Bolga, who’s blocking the passage, and he pushes them back, causing some damage to one of them.

    ROUND 3
    ROUND 4

    Boots searches closely, and from under a big stone tile on the floor, he uncovers a bastard sword. A tad bit big for his own size, but very useful for the rest of the warband.
    Bolga and Temir push the skeletons back into the room they came from, and Bolga destroys yet another one of them. Another skeleton joins the fight, and the two of them jump on the dusking, who cracks some more bones, but the skeletons are still standing, their skulls as if smiling, bereft of any skin.

    ROUND 4
    ROUND 5

    Boots notices skeletons approach from the West, and runs back to the East. He has a clear line of sight to the other end of the hall, noticing another trio of skeletons, protecting a set of items on the far West wall.
    Bolga and Temir destroy their foes, and walk further into the hall, further to the south. As they approach, a trap is sprung! A spear flies from an opening in the wall, only to be caught by Temir’s armour.

    ROUND 5
    ROUND 6

    Boots charges at the closest skeleton approaching from the West, and with a swift fencing blow, he destroys it. Another skeleton jumps in to close the gap, but fails to hit the dodgy halfling.
    Having avoided the trap to the south, Bolga and Temir head further down, and see another guarded stash, with three skeletal defenders.

    ROUND 6
    ROUND 7

    The fight commences in all parts of the dungeon.
    Boots attacks the skeleton to the north, but misses. The skeleton attacks back, but the halfling takes the upper hand, failing though to get past the skeleton’s rusty armour.
    Bolga attacks a skeleton guarding the stash to the South, but only manages to push him back. He’s attack consecutively by all the three enemies. He enters a berserker rage. These skeletons are an abomination to life. One by one, he finishes them off, in a violent yet tranquil wardance. Temir is almost mesmerized watching him avoid their hits, and counterattack each and everyone of them, sending them to oblivion.
    Having arrived to the battle, Brobern tries to support Caldas. He wounds the skeleton, but loses the next exchange, and the skeleton finally manages a finishing strike, bringing the young man down.
    Myrick closes in to the support of his fallen companion and with his Heartseeker, he destroys the skeleton.

    ROUND 7
    ROUND 8

    A skeleton comes at Myrick, who with skill, avoids the attack, and attacks back, destroying it.
    To the south, Bolga takes a look at the stash containing a bottle of wine, a light armour and helmet and a quick dagger, while Temir explores further, finding only broken ground and cobwebs that make it difficult to trespass.
    The skeletons from the West approach the fight.

    ROUND 8
    ROUND 9

    Myrick and Boots join in the fray westwards, but only manage to wound one skeleton.

    ROUND 9
    ROUND 10

    Boots fights again hard against the skeletons, exchanging strikes, and destroying one, and wounding another, while he escapes unscathed. Myrick attacks too, but doesn’t manage to land a hit. As he walks to the west, a toxic acid gas is released, and he drops unconscious. Boots and the Skeletons move back in time, while Omac withstands it.
    He takes a step back and casts a spell to the wounded skeleton, hoping to finish him off, but to no avail.

    ROUND 10
    ROUND 11

    Boots covers his face in his cloak, and walks undetected through the toxic cloud, coming at the side of the unaware skeleton, who is eliminated, by a swift slash. The other skeleton attacks the halfling, and they fight, wounding each other.
    Omac doesn’t let his companion unaided, and casts a healing incancation on him, Boots immediately feeling rejuvenated.
    Temir has approached the rest of the party and explores the rooms just south of the toxic cloud. Another trap is sprung and this time the spear finds it’s target. Temir is wounded, and removes the spear point from his leg.

    ROUND 11
    ROUND 12

    Boots destroys his opponent, while Temir, despite being wounded continues his exploration.
    Bolga listens to footsteps behind him, and turns around to find another skeleton coming at him. He wastes not a single second. The cleaver comes down with such a force, that the bones become dust against the wall.
    The dungeon is peaceful now. Only the Ravens footsteps are audible, who explore the entire area, and tend to their wounded, before heading out.

    ROUND 12


    Rolling at the Injury tables for Brobern and Myrick I was relieved to find out that they only got Knocked Out.
    Myrick and Brobern only earn 1 XP while the rest of the warband earns 2 XP. Brobern reaches Level 1 and gets an Agility Increase.
    In total we got 8 Loot Rolls. The items rolled are:
    Strange Map, Bastard Sword, Fine Wine, (Light Armour + Helmet)x2, Thieves’ Tools, Large Quiver, Fine Self Bow
    Unusual Finds resulted in Sacks of Grain worth 1 Gold Mark.
    News Travels resulted in no events.

    The Ravens are tired, but smiling as they sit around the campfire. Laughs and banter are heard as they tease and praise each other about how they fought against the skeletons. Despite going in deeper and deeper into the dungeon, Omac can only sit back and enjoy as his companions grow stronger and stronger and get acquainted to the harsh life of the adventurer. He’s worried that the dungeon won’t end soon, but he doesn’t want to cloud their minds with his own troubles. Perhaps he’s growing as well.

    Session Summary

    Since I rolled an easier enemy this time, I decided to take my chances and explore the entire map. It was risky, as the traps and extra enemies provided an uncounted for factor, but in the end we made it. I want to spice things up a bit for my next dungeon delve, so I’ll see if I can introduce some different options. As I understood delves are supposed to be a different option for battles, similar to how threats are aimed to earn adventure points, contracts to earn money, ride patrols to earn experience and quests to get story points, delves are aimed towards loot, and for sure this seems to work out pretty well. But I’d like some more variety, and not have to pause the dungeon and do another adventure type for fear of repetitivenes rather than fear of losing. Taking into account that I have so many active delves, I’ll see what I can do to make things more interesting. Don’t get me wrong though, Five Leagues from the Borderlands 3rd Edition has great options to keep one occupied, with great replayability, it’s just that coming from an RPG background, I want to squeeze the dungeon theme as much as I can.

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