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  • giorgis 7:31 pm on July 22, 2019 Permalink | Reply
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    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.

     
  • giorgis 4:02 pm on July 15, 2021 Permalink | Reply
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    Miniatures pt50 – Elf and Troll 

    With the summer becomes increasingly more difficult to focus on the hobby, with it’s heat waves and mental burnout after months of lockdown, I managed to get down and paint a couple miniatures. An Elf Thief with crossbow from Alternative Armies Hordes of the Things range and a Minibits (now Pendraken – odd that they don’t redirect the hyperlink) 15mm Troll (Which is actually a big orc compared to my Demonworld miniatures).

    Unfortunately with the new EU customs scheme, I can no longer afford to purchase miniatures from non-EU vendors unless they have applied for the IOSS VAT scheme. To my understanding with this scheme I get to prepay VAT during ordering and the package will pass free through customs.

    Thankfully Eureka miniatures has applied for IOSS and there are a few EU based vendors on 15mm that I can try out. Also I picked up a nice lead pile of shame beforehand, in order to be ready for the changes.

    Elf Thief
    Troll
     
  • giorgis 12:06 pm on June 25, 2021 Permalink | Reply
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    Miniatures pt49 – Executioners 

    Three executioners from the Fantasy HOT line of Alternative Armies. Simple, older sculpt designs, but fun nonetheless.

    Executioner
    Executioner
    Executioner
     
  • giorgis 9:46 am on June 24, 2021 Permalink | Reply
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    Miniatures pt48 – Men at arms 

    I wanted to complement my regular medieval troops with more figures, so here come the Dismounted men-at-arms in kettle helms, mixed weapons from the 13th century range of the Khurasan Miniatures historicals.

    I went with an olive green cloth and a simple red and white horizontal stripes on the shield.

    Man at arms with sword
    Man at arms with axe
    Man at arms with mace
     
  • giorgis 10:40 am on June 20, 2021 Permalink | Reply
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    Miniatures pt47 – The Freakshow 

    Continuing on some eligible for Five Parsecs, either as crewmen or as enemies, here’s some Ral Partha Mercenaries, “The Freakshow” from their Critical Mass Range.

    These were from the first Critical Mass figures I’ve ordered and I reached the wrong conclusion as to their scale. The range is closer to true 15mm rather than 1:100, just some of them are bigger than average and fit well with my Alternative Armies minis. But the Bounty Hunter and the Bug-eyed alien are clearly smaller – and this is the main size of the range.

    I didn’t paint the tailed alien as I have decisions to make as to their basing. Either go with a cavalry base, or do some cutting/bending. So here are four out of five of the mercs.

    Skullface Cyborg
    Squidface McGee
    Bug-eyed Bill
    Bounty Hunter
     
  • giorgis 5:16 pm on June 19, 2021 Permalink | Reply
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    Miniatures pt46 – More Xenos 

    So, I wanted a set of 20 or more xenos for Five Parsecs: Bug Hunt. I decided to go ahead with the Vanguard Miniatures Incisors from the Entomorph range.

    I wanted a very quick paint job, so after sketch prime, I followed with beige drybrush for the carapace, and a purple wash. I think I did another step in between that I might be forgetting right now.

    The Vanguard sculpts are very sharp. I painted all 24 bugs of the set, but since its six variants, I’m presenting those six here.

     
  • giorgis 9:57 am on June 18, 2021 Permalink | Reply
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    Miniatures pt45 – Gray Alien Thralls 

    Here’s my Gray Alien Thralls from the Hordes of the Future range (HOF) from Alternative Armies.

    Really like the sculpts. Simple and easy to paint. I think they’re gonna fit in my Five Parsecs from Home games perfectly.

    Gray Alien Alien Thrall
    Gray Alien Thrall
    Gray Alien Thrall
    Gray Alien Thrall
    Gray Alien Thrall
     
  • giorgis 10:34 am on June 17, 2021 Permalink | Reply
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    Miniatures pt44 – Agents 

    Here you can see some Battle Valor miniatures I got from the US. It’s a Frigian Foot Captain, a Frigian Assassin and a Legian Captain.

    Battle Valor is on the bulkier side of 15mm minis, so they won’t fit with true 15mm scale, but they’re okay next to my Demonworld heroic 15mm.

    My wash came a bit stronger and darker, but it gave them a nice look. They just need ample light to show it.

    Foot Captain
    Assassin
    Foot Captain
     
  • giorgis 5:47 pm on May 30, 2021 Permalink | Reply
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    In the Trollshaws. Ep12 

    If it was a longer trip to bridge, I’d place some secret clocks to see what happens with, Ambald, the cart, the goods or the bandits. Instead, the Oracle will answer those.
    Also since it’s highly likely that this session will be about a fight, I won’t bother with using BOLD for connections, as I did in the past. If there is no fight, I will interject the connections from that point on.

    The trio leaves on foot, to ensure that the bandits don’t hear the horses.
    They also want to make sure that the bandits don’t kill Ambald, and want the element of surprise. For certain the steady rain will provide some bonuses to their stalk/hide rolls.

    Now, when they reach a visible distance from the bridge, I need to start asking questions.
    Q: Are the bandits still there?
    A: Yes, but, they’re almost ready to leave.
    Q: Is Ambald with them? (Likely, since they’re still there)
    A: Yes, and he’s bound.
    Q: Do the bandits intend to take the cart with them?
    A: Yes, and, they fixed the axle and they’re ready to start loading, and harnessing it the horse.

    So I’m trying to picture the scene. A bridge, 6 bandits, one hostage. I’ll ask each of the following a Likely Question.
    Q: Is the bandit leader in the middle giving orders? (Likely)
    A: Yes, and he is focused on the task.
    Q: Is one bandit at each side of the bridge standing watch? (Likely)
    A: Yes, and they’re focused as well.
    Q: Is one bandit with the hostage? (Likely)
    A: No, and there’s noone with the hostage. He seems to have moved himself to the edge of the bridge near the river.
    Q: Are ~~two~~ three bandits loading the cart? (Likely)
    A: Yes

    Camthalion raises his arm as the bridge is in sight. They find some shrubs to hide behind, and watch carefully.
    It seems that the bandits intend to take the cart with them along with the horse. They must have planned to carry the goods, but it seems that with the rain it won’t be possible, so they spent time unloading the cart, fixing it, and loading it back again. This gave the party the time they needed to reach them.
    Ambald the teamster is rope bound, but he has moved himself to the center of the bridge by the edge. There’s no bandit with him, he’s probably thinking of jumping in the river if the bandits intend to kill him.
    Their leader is giving three bandits orders on how to load the cart, while two other bandits are watching each side of the bridge for any travelers.
    Leowyn lays out the plan: they will move along the river bank carefully to avoid attention, as close as possible. Camthalion will cover them with his bow, while she and Dwalin will ambush them from the east side. If any bandit tries to get to Ambald, Camthalion will shoot them.

    So, I’ll ask at 500′ distance, if there is a chance that the bandit watches in their direction. If so, then I’ll roll in the Stalk/Hide vs Perception rule. If not, I’ll assume they move 100′ unhindered and ask again. Q: (500′) Does the bandit have a chance of seeing them?
    A: Yes
    Camthalion: Stalk: 64+40-5= 99: 80%: Moves 34′
    Leowyn: Stalk: 86+5-5= 86: 70%: Moves 12′
    Dwalin: Stalk: 68+2-5= 65: 40%: Moves 9′
    Q: Does the bandit have a chance of seeing them?
    A: False Presupposition. The bandit abandons his post. I’m thinking three options. Ambald tries to escape, someone arrives at the bridge, or he’s called to help load the cart. 1d3: 2: Someone arrives at the bridge.
    I’ll roll at the harnmaster encounters table: Lawless/Day: 59: Forester: 55: Offering employment. He offers to help them load the cart.

    As the party moves by the river bank under the cover of rain, the bandit that stood watch, looks their way, but can’t see them. His attention is drawn by a man arriving at the bridge. The bandit leader starts posing as an unlucky caravan master whose cart broke and he had to fix it. The man seems to offer his help. The distance is too great for the party to tell if they explain the prisoner situation or if it hasn’t come up to that yet.

    So, the party has moved at least 100′ more as the following transpires.
    Q: Does Ambald take the opportunity to escape?
    A: Yes!
    Q: Does he jump in the water? (Haven’t asked if he’s still bound)
    A: No

    I assume he has found an opening. Either he runs the other way, because the bandits are occupied with the forester, or he runs past the forester, hoping this will startle them, as they might need to face him.
    Q: But first I need to ask where does the forester come from? East? (Likely as the event impacted the watch on my side of the bridge)
    A: Yes
    Q: Does Ambald run past the Forester?
    A: No, he runs the other way, West
    Q: Are his hands still bound?
    A: No, he has untied himself.

    Ambald: Running: MM: 43+25=68: 90%: Runs 135′
    Q: Does the West watch bandit run after him?
    A: False Presupposition. He’s pushed down by Ambald as he runs past him.

    The taskmaster snaps his knots, and strides quickly west, pushing a startled bandit aside, who falls down in mud pool.
    “The prisoner!” The leader shouts. “He escapes!”

    Q: Do the bandits go after him?
    A: Yes, but, only one of them.
    Q: Is there any animosity with the Forester?
    A: No. For some reason, their ruse hasn’t been uncovered.

    So I decide that the party has moved another 100′ as the following transpires.
    Ambald: Running: MM: 51+25=76: Runs 150′
    Bandit: Running: MM: 64=64: Runs 80′

    The taskmaster doubles his running distance as one bandit starts to go after him. His armor and weapons seem to weigh him down.

    Q: Does the bandit keep up the chase?
    A: No

    The party moves another 100′ closer. The bandits are all too busy with the escape to notice what’s going on.

    The bandit stops to catch his breath, and waves his hand down in a gesture to let it be, and returns slowly to the bridge.

    Q: Is the party possible to be seen? (we’re less than 200′ away, but still there’s no reason to look at the river bank)
    A: No

    So the party moves another 100′.
    Now we’re too close. It’s time for the combat encounter. Camthalion is 66′ away, with Leowyn 88′ away, and Dwalin 91′ away. This time I’ll have them roll on the stalk/hide if they want to come closer.

    Round 1:
    Camthalion nooks a +5 arrow.
    Dwalin: Stalk/Hide: 94+2-5=91: 100%: Moves 23′ (68′ away)
    Leowyn: Stalk/Hide: 31+5-5=31: 60%: Moves 11′ (77′ away)

    Still distracted by the escape and the forester noone pays attention to Dwalin and Leowyn coming closer to the bridge.

    Round 2:
    Camthalion is waiting for the right moment.
    Dwalin: Stalk/Hide: 46+2-5=43: 70%: Moves 16′ (52′ away)
    Leowyn: Stalk/Hide: 56+5-5=56: 80%: Moves 14′ (63′ away)

    Round 3:
    Camthalion is waiting for the right moment.
    Dwalin: Stalk/Hide: 26+2-5=23: 60%: Moves 14′ (38′ away)
    Leowyn: Stalk/Hide: 75+5-5=75: 90%: Moves 16′ (47′ away)

    Round 4:
    Camthalion is waiting for the right moment.
    Dwalin: Stalk/Hide: 89+2-5=86: 100%: Moves 23′ (15′ away)
    Leowyn: Stalk/Hide: 0212+5-5=-10: 30%: Moves 5′ (42′ away)

    Round 5:
    Camthalion shoots the bandit watch at the east side.: 01: Fumble: You really mishandle your weapon. Stunned 2 rounds.
    Bandit: Draws weapon and Moves to attack Dwalin (in range): 59+5=64: 80%: Attacks: 68+80-100+43-30-30=31:-
    Dwalin: Attacks: 37+51+15-15=88: 7A: 79-20=59: Blow to shield shoulder breaks shield. If no shield: shoulder broken, arm useless.
    Leowyn: Moves in melee distance.

    Camthalion was holding his bow strung for so long until his friends arrived that he couldn’t take it anymore. He lets it go, and misses, while the bowstring hits him hard on the face. He loses his concentration completely, stunned.
    Leowyn shouts “You rotten bandit scum! you’ll die!”.
    As they’re within fight range, the bandit dashes at them, slashing at Dwalin’s chain hauberk, who hits back with his mace, breaking the bandit’s left arm.

    Q: Does the Forester flee? (Likely)
    A: Yes, and, quickly. He doesn’t want to get involved in a fight. Intervention: Entity Negative (Bandits/PC/Forester): Bandits. d144: Not the sharpest tool in the shed
    The bandit’s sword edge gets dull with the hit on the chain hauberk. -5 to attack.
    I also need to define some distances.
    Q: Is the bridge long?
    A: No
    Q: Is the bridge wide?
    A: Yes
    So, it’s a short, 100′ long bridge, 20′ wide, so that two carts can pass at the same time.
    The cart with the 3 bandits and the leader is 50′ away from the edge (65′ away total), while the other bandit is 100′ away (115′ away).

    The bandits will draw their swords and come running towards Dwalin and Leowyn at the edge of the river bank.

    Seeing the fight start, and hits being exchanged, the forester makes a run for it. Noone bothers with him.

    Round 6:
    Camthalion: Stunned
    Bandit 1: Attacks Dwalin: 13+43-30-5=21:-
    Bandit Leader: Moves 55′ closer.
    Bandit 2-4: Moves 55′ closer.
    Bandit 5: Moves 55′ closer.
    Dwalin: Attacks Bandit 1: 56+51+15-15=107: 11B: 60-10=50. Blow to forearm. +5 hits. If no arm armor: Stunned 1 round.
    Leowyn: Flanks and attacks Bandit 1: 25+38+15-15+15=78: 5

    As the rest of the bandits draw their blades and come closer, Dwalin and Leowyn flank their lone adversary. Dwalin blocks his enemy’s blow and brings his mace down on his forearm, stunning him, while Leowyn barely scratches him, flanking him.

    Round 7:
    Camthalion: Stunned
    Bandit 1: Stunned
    Bandit Leader: Moves & Attacks (D/L): Dwalin: 52+5=57: 80%: Attacks: 85+80-100+56-30:91: 8
    Bandit 2: Moves & Attacks: Dwalin: 58: 80%: Attacks: 100+37+43+80-100-30=130:14C: 47: Minor chest wound. +3 hits. 1 hit per round. -5 to activity.
    Bandit 3: Moves & Attacks: Leowyn: 13: 50%: Attacks: 27+43+50-100-40=-20:-
    Bandit 4: Moves & Attacks: Leowyn: 33: 60%: Attacks: 20+43+60-100-40=-17:-
    Bandit 5: Moves 55′ Closer.
    Dwalin attacks Bandit Leader: 96+36-20-5+51+15-15=158: 20E: 100+20=120: Strike to head destroys brain. Life is hard for the unfortunate fool. Expires in a heap, immediately. Bandit Leader is down.
    Leowyn attacks Bandit 1: 42+20+15+38+15-15=115: 13C: 18: Minor calf wound. 1 hit per round. Bandit 1 is down.

    Camthalion still struggles to recover himself from the hit of his bowstring. The bandit still writes in pain on his forearm, but his companions close in.
    The highwaymen leader snaps at Leowyn, recognizing her from before. “You can’t have both the cart and your lives!”
    At the same time he tries to get past Dwalin’s defenses, but the dwarf fends off the attacks. Another bandit though finds the opportunity and gets his blade past the dwarf’s armor. A minor bleeding chest wound.
    “You’ll lose both the cart and your lives!” Dwalin counters, and hits the leader with his mace so hard on the head, that the skull is shattered and the brain is splattered on the bandits.
    The other two bandits fail to wound Leowy , who is focused on her enemy, slashing his calf, bringing him down.

    Round 8:

    Q: Do the bandits flee? (Likely)
    A: Yes

    Camthalion: nooks arrow.
    Bandit 2: Disengage & Flee: MM: 62: 40 vs: 16-10=6: 10. Bandit 2 Flees.
    Bandit 3: Disengage & Flee: MM: 41: 30 vs: 32-15=17: 10: Bandit 3 Flees.
    Bandit 4: Disengage & Flee: MM: 60: 40 vs: 92-15=77: 60: Leowyn attacks Bandit 4: 06+38+15-15: 44: -. Bandit 4 Flees.
    Bandit 5: Flees.

    Camthalion readies an arrow and aims at the bandits, whose morale is broken completely at the skill gore strike to their leader. They flee to the west, before Dwalin or Leowyn can react.

    Q: Is the horse tied to the cart?
    A: No, but it doesn’t have a saddle.

    Leowyn runs to ride the horse. Riding without a saddle will be a Medium MM.
    Leowyn: Riding: 16+46=62: 40%. Success.
    Dwalin takes out a bandage to mend his wound.

    Leowyn jumps on the bareback horse, while Dwalin stops. His blood still pumping, to take care of his chest wound. He knows they won the fight. The steady rain washing away the remains of his enemy’s head.

    Round 9:
    I consider that Camthalion doesn’t have it in his nature to shoot fleeing enemies, especially men, and especially when they no longer pose a threat. Instead, he will move to Dwalin, see if he can help him with a healing spell.
    Dwalin can’t join in a chase and fight in his condition, so he will stay there.
    Now Leowyn has a demeanor change. She’s becoming more bloodthirsty. She’ll try to finish off the three bandits and then try to find the teamster.

    Q: Do the three bandits run in different directions?
    A: Yes, but two of them run in the same direction.

    So Leowyn will go after these two.
    I deem that the horse she got now is a Heavy Horse since it is a cart drawing horse, which means a speed of 150′. Still, three times faster than the bandits.
    So the two bandits have moved 100′ west so far. Since they were not expecting Leowyn this first attack will be a Rear attack.
    The other bandit goes (N/S): South

    Leowyn: Rides and Attacks Bandit 2: 97+52+46=195: 140%: Attack: 95+38+15+15+20-15+140-100=208: 22E: 27+20=47: Minor Chest Wound. +3 hits. 1 hit per round. -5 to activity.

    Round 10:
    Q: Does bandit 3 keep fleeing? (Likely, he hopes the other bandit will slow Leowyn down)
    A: Yes, but, he changes direction, going (N/S): North
    Bandit 2: Turns and attacks Leowyn: 75+43-40-20-5=53:-
    Leowyn: Attacks Bandit 2: 61+38+15+20-15=119: 15C: 3: Weak Strike yields no extra damage. +0 hits. Bandit 2 is down.
    Camthalion: Surface Ways: 68: Success. Heals: 1 hit point at Dwalin.

    The bandit tries a futile attack to fend off the Shield maiden, but he fails and is struck down. Meanwhile his companion has had the smarts to get off the road and run to the fields North.
    Camthalion works his healing powers on Dwalin who becomes more and more appreciative of the elf.

    Round 11:
    Q: Is Bandit 3 visible to Leowyn?
    A: No
    Q: Is Bandit 4 visible to Leowyn? (Unlikely)
    A: False Presupposition. Bandit 4 has escaped, he’s no longer in the field.
    Q: Is Ambald visible to Leowyn?
    A: Yes, and he’s realized what is going on, and is returning.

    The thrill of battle still in her veins, she looks around for the rest of the bandits, but she can’t find them, they both seem to have dispersed in different directions, hiding behind trees and shrubs. But she makes out another figure. It’s Ambald, the teamster, coming to them.
    She wipes her blade off the blood, and sheathes it.
    “You arrived just in time.” He tells her as he comes within shouting distance. “You have great skill with the blade.” He adds.
    Leowyn smiles. “I’ve brought friends.” She adds.
    They tie back the horse to the cart, load it and return to the inn.
    Wyny is more than happy to have them all back safe, and even Ambald in one piece.

    Now the party must decide how to proceed.

    Going with BOLD again to roll up some connections.

    action gerund subject
    scrutinize negating a dislike
    assure detailing an annoyance
    speculate working a decision

    Camthalion, wants to find out more about the evil brewing in the region.
    Dwalin, being a stereotypical stubborn greedy dwarf, wants to keep searching the Trollshaws for the relic.
    Leowyn has given her word to the caravan master, and also going south to Tharbad takes her closer to her personal task to find her lover’s killer.

    The three adventurers go to their room, and have a meeting.
    Camthalion points out his worries. “There is great evil in the region. The Crebain followed us back here. Soon after I was confronted by a man who almost killed me. Master of the black arts, who knew we were at the keep. I found several manuscripts which we should try to decipher. Maybe bring them to Rivendell. That’s what should be done, before we head back in the keep, to clean it up of any residual evil.”
    Leowyn takes point on the conversation. “I understand your worries. But I have given my word to the caravan master. He’s lost a guard because he changed course to come here, and he’d have turned back, unless I offered my blade until Tharbad. Come with me down to Tharbad, and as soon as we finish our escort duty, we’ll return to the keep or go to Rivendell. There will be enough time.”
    Dwalin, diminishes the importance of Leowyn’s promise. “Did you offer your blade for free?” He asks.
    Leowyn shakes her head. “No, I’m to be paid the escort’s wage.”
    “Then you can null the contract, with no pay, and no harm done!” Dwalin adds. “We should search the region, if there’s so much evil here.”
    “I could try to convince Wyny to hire you as guards as well, you’ve proved yourselves and we could use the extra silver.” She tries to convince them otherwise.

    With these I deem that Camthalion has used up the speculate, detailing, a dislike, Leowyn has used up the assure, working, a decision and Dwalin has used up scrutinize, negating, an annoyance.

    Now let’s see on this break or make moment if the party will stick together.

    Camthalion: Influence: 34+20=54: Failure
    Leowyn: Influence: 87=87: Partial Success
    Dwalin: Influence: 34-5=29: Failure

    So Leowyn has another shot at it.

    “Is the pay good?” Dwalin asks.
    “I’m sure we can work something out. We can also ask for the teamster to put in a good word.” Leowyn replies.

    Leowyn: Influence: 62: Failure

    “Doesn’t sound reliable to me.” Dwalin says. “I’ll stay in Rhudaur with Camthalion. I think Tharbad is not in our way.”
    “I still wish you would join us.” Camthalion says. “Is your mind made up?”
    “I’m afraid so. I must honor my word. There’s a chance that in Tharbad I can find clues about what I’m looking for. May we meet again.” Leowyn adds.
    There’s an odd pause. They all feel numb, but they must take their own way.

    Bookkeeping

    Arrows: Camthalion is at 35+2 (I deem that the fumbled shot destroyed the arrow) arrows,
    Leowyn is at 35 arrows

    Criticals EP
    Camthalion
    Dwalin 310
    Leowyn
    Kill Points EP
    Camthalion
    Dwalin 250
    Leowyn 390
    Hits Received EP
    Camthalion
    Dwalin 26
    Leowyn
    Spell Points EP
    Camthalion 100
    Dwalin
    Leowyn

    Maneuver Points|EP
    Camthalion|
    Dwalin|
    Leowyn|10

    Non-Idea EP Total EP
    Camthalion 100
    Dwalin 586
    Leowyn 400

    I’ll give the party half the total as idea points, 1086 EP total, divided by three, 362 each.

    Summing up, from previous session.

    Name Experience Points
    Camthalion 5568 EP
    Dwalin 6614 EP
    Leowyn 5653 EP

    Money: The party pool is 6sp, 87bp, 6cp and 59tp. Which is 2sp, 29bp, 2cp and 20tp each.

    Hit Points: Dwalin is at 17 hit points, Leowyn is at full hit points, Camthalion is at full hit points.

    Additional Gear Weapons Valuables Herbs
    Camthalion Broadsword +5, Javelin +5 2 gems, 3 written works, 1 magic ring Rewk, Tharl, Attanar, Suranie
    Dwalin Battle Axe +10, Light
    Leowyn Morningstar +5

    Session Summary

    I was almost certain that the battle with the bandits would end in disaster when Dwalin got hit and Camthalion fumbled. But his 100 on his critical on the extra successful strike on the bandit leader changed the course of the battle in one second!
    I could have done the Influence roll opposed, with the entire party moving as one, but I worked with MERP success levels for two reasons.
    The narrative reason is that the party had serious reasons to follow their own ways. They felt strongly for their opinions.
    The mechanical reason is that MERP has exhausted me. The system is ancient and it has tons of gaps or non-streamlined parts, to put it nicely. I want to switch to another system. Either by converting these characters or by starting new ones.
    So essentially I’m putting a nice end on the Trollshaws part of the adventure, with options to continue the story sooner or later.

     
  • giorgis 4:28 pm on May 23, 2021 Permalink | Reply
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    In the Trollshaws. Ep11 

    Switching back to 10 days ago, to Camthalion.
    Setting up some key points in my GM hat:

    • Lord Ar Gular, whose keep the party raided, is a regular in disguise in the Last Inn.
    • Crebain spies to Ar Gular have seen the party and most likely have notified their master
    • Either Crebain or Orcs may have tracked the party to the Last Inn.
    • Considering the raid on the keep, Ar Gular (Turlin) is unlikely to be at the Last Inn before the party
    • Ar Gular (Turlin) may arrive to the Last Inn to gather information, after examining the condition of the keep
    • Even if the party wasn’t tracked, there is the unlikely event that loose lips while staying at the inn may spread the story of their whereabouts to the keep

    Some minor points:

    • The cost of food & lodging for 10 days for the two of them is 1sp
    • Considering the extra care Dwalin needs, Camthalion will need to either pay extra, offer some services, or take care of him, himself

    Tools:

    • I won’t be using any random encounters, rather ask the Oracle every passing day
    • I won’t be generating weather unless required, since the party is in a safe place

    Day 15, Hithui

    Camthalion will try to come to an arrangement with the Grumms so that they take care of Dwalin in exchange for his services.
    Rubb, being the innkeep, is where Camthalion goes first.

    The elf finds Rubb behind the bar and puts a silver coin on the board. “Innkeep, we will pay the next 10 days. Separate room, three meals a day for me and Dwalin.” Rubb takes the silver. “Breakfast is served.”
    Camthalion hasn’t moved.
    “Anything else I can do to help?” The innkeep asks.
    “Can you look after Dwalin? I’m here to offer my skills in return.” Camthalion offers.

    Influence: 20+20+30=70: Failure

    Q: Does Rubb agree? (Unlikely)
    A: No

    “We have our hands full with customers. I’m sorry you’ll have to take care of your friend on your own.” Rubb replies.
    Camthalion puts another 5bp on the table. “Will this make it up for your services then?”

    Influence: 39+20+30=89: Partial Success

    Q: Does Rubb agree? (Slightly Likely)
    A: Yes, and he will offer to buy anything Camthalion forages from the woods if worth it.

    The innkeep takes the amount. “I think that is fine. Also if you brave the woods and find anything useful, I’ll consider buying. Now go eat some breakfast and speak with Bura about your friend.”
    Camthalion thanks the innkeep and does as asked.

    Camthalion will search for General Purpose Herbs in the 10-mile hex where the Last Inn resides.
    I choose that he will search for Attanar, which cures fever, is located in Freshwater banks/coasts and should be useful to the Grumms.

    Encounter Check: 8: No encounter

    Search: 36+20+35+2= 93: Near Success
    Search: 10+20+35+2+20= 97: Near Success
    Search: 10+20+35+2+20= 97: Near Success
    Search: 09+20+35+2+20= 96: Near Success
    Search: 45+20+35+2+20= 122: Success. One dose found.

    The elf searches along the river coast, where Attanar, a fever curing moss grows. He finds traces of it, so he keep searching along the river, under the bridge, until he finally finds a good amount. He puts it carefully in his pouch and returns to the inn.

    Q: Are the Grumms interested in Attanar?
    A: False Presupposition. Camthalion never brings it to them, considering that the importance of the herb is too much to give away.

    Q: Does anything happen during the day?
    A: No

    Night 15-16, Hithui

    Q: Does anything happen during the night?
    A: No, but it’s going to be likely in the morning

    Day 16, Hithui

    Q: Does anything happen during the day? (Likely)
    A: Yes
    Q: Is it loose lips? (Likely)
    A: Yes

    Dwalin eats and is cared for in his living vegetable condition. As Camthalion goes for breakfast, he can’t but overhear two customers talking about him and the dwarf, and how they returned from the haunted castle.

    Camthalion will search for Healing Herbs in the 10-mile hex where the Last Inn resides.
    I choose that he will search for Rewk, which grows in the forest.

    Encounter Check: 10: No encounter

    Search: 70+20+35+2+10=137. Success. One dose found.
    Since there is more time available, he will also search for Thurl in the same region.
    Search: 29+20+35+2+30=.116. Success. One dose found.

    Since there is nothing else that grows in the “Desiduous Forest” locale, Camthalion will return to the inn, eat his lunch and head out again.

    I choose that he will search for Suranie, which is Stun Relief, is located in Freshwater banks/coasts.

    Encounter Check: 11: No encounter

    Search: 11+20+35+2+10=78: Partial Success.
    Search: 45+20+35+2+10=112: Success. One dose found.

    Camthalion heads out for herbs again, and gathers several that will help them in their travels. Rewk, Thurl and Suranie among others.

    Night 16-17, Hithui

    Q: Does anything happen during the night?
    A: No, but it’s going to be likely in the morning

    Day 17, Hithui

    Q: Does anything happen during the day? (Likely)
    A: Yes, and it’s potential danger.
    When: (3 Watches, 1d12 hours, 1d60 minutes into day): 2.26pm.
    So, it’s highly likely whatever happens, plays out while Camthalion is outside foraging.
    I choose that he will search for Aloe to the scrubs by the road, which helps against burns.

    Search: 22+20+35+2= 79: Partial Success.
    Search: 0159+20+35+2= -1: Absolute Failure. No more doses will be found for the rest of the day, and Camthalion keeps searching.

    Q: Does the event happen at the inn?
    A: Yes, and Turlin or Orcs or Crebain (asked in this order) have arrived. Intervention: 5: Regress Plot. Camthalion doesn’t see the inn from where he is, so he is completely unaware and will return after the event.
    Q: Did Turlin arrive at the inn?
    A: No, but words have reached him that the adventurers headed to the inn.
    Q: Are Orcs attacking the inn?
    A: False Presupposition. There are no orcs left. The garisson was eradicated, and Thuk is with Ar Gular (Turlin).
    So if it’s something dangerous it must be Crebain.
    Q: Is it Crebain? (Likely)
    A: Yes
    Q: Do the Crebain attack?
    A: No, and, they don’t harass anyone, they are just spotted.

    Camthalion returns to the inn after a whole day of searching herbs, empty handed. There is a lot of ruckus, so he asks what’s going on, and learns about a group of large black crows swarming on the sky and circling above the inn many times before heading back North.
    Even if the customers don’t know it, he does. It’s Crebain. Like the ones they met at the keep. This can’t be a coincidence. He won’t be far from the inn to search for herbs again. Instead he will be patrolling nearby. He alarms his hosts, but without being too specific.
    “Crows like these often are friends with orcs and goblins. If they dared show themselves here, we should be alarmed. I’ll keep an eye.” He tells Rubb.

    Q: Does Rubb find him overreacting?
    A: No, and he believes him right away. Intervention: 4: Advance Plot. He connects the dots.

    Rubb nods. “Trolls held my boy and fed him like a turkey. These are dangerous times. I don’t know what trouble you stirred, but it’s coming this way, and it won’t go away even if you do. You’re to stay these 10 days you paid for, and please don’t come bringing trouble again to our doorstep.”

    Night 17-18, Hithui

    Q: Does anything happen during the night?
    A: No.

    Day 18, Hithui

    Q: Does anything happen during the day?
    A: Yes.
    Q: Is it dangerous?
    A: Yes.
    Q: Is it Turlin?
    A: Yes, and he knows the adventurers are here.
    Q: Does he appear as Turlin?
    A: Yes
    Q: Does he find out who the adventurer’s are? (Likely)
    A: Yes, but, he risks being exposed.
    Q: Does he try to ambush Camthalion who’s on patrol? (Likely)
    A: Yes
    Q: Is Thuk, nearby?
    A: No, and he’s no longer with him.
    Q: Does he go by the inn first? (or does he happen to come across Camthalion?)
    A: No.

    So I can place the scene. Camthalion is patrolling out on the woods. Ar Gular, furious that a trio of adventurers raided his base, is informed by his trusted Crebain that they are staying in the Last Inn, where he is a regular. He travels alone, as he has no minions left. Thuk his captain, he either eliminated or he’s nowhere to be seen, to avoid facing his wrath.
    So he goes to the Last Inn, posing like the wandering minstrel, Turlin, looking for an elf, a dwarf and a shield maiden. Just before reaching the Last Inn, he comes face to face with Camthalion. Although he’s quite certain the elf might be part of the adventurers he’s looking for, he want to be certain, considering the Last Inn’s clientele, and this just might warn Camthalion, as they face off.
    Catching Camthalion all alone, brings a unique opportunity to Turlin, and is certain to attack the elf.
    Camthalion on the other hand is on guard, but Ar Gular posing as Turlin doesn’t seem as a threat at first glance.
    There is a HUGE level difference between them (Level 9 vs Level 1), and Camthalion’s only chance is the fact that Ar Gular, being a Mage doesn’t have any significant defenses. If he starts casting spells though, that’s another story.

    So, first of all let’s see if Ar Gular notices Camthalion (who is hiding).
    Ar Gular (Perception): 15-15-40: Failure
    Now let’s see if Camthalion notices Ar Gular (who isn’t hiding).
    Camthalion (Perception): 69+35=104: Near Success: 91+35+20=146: Success.

    Camthalion is out patrolling, bow at hand, when he hears footsteps. He draws an arrow, and moves to investigate.
    He sees a man, round face, with uneven gray hair and amber eyes. He wears fine clothing and several pouches hang from his belt.

    Q: Does he remember him from several nights ago in the inn?
    A: No
    So he doesn’t remember him, which keeps him a tad bit on guard.

    He lowers his bow. “Greetings stranger.” He says. “Dangerous times to walk alone.”
    Startled, the man, returns the greeting.
    “Greetings stranger. You’re not in danger from me. I’m but Turlin, a wandering minstrel.” He says.
    Camthalion responds in kind. “You’re not in danger from me either. Seen any orcs? they have ventured too south for my liking.”

    Q: Does Turlin say he has seen orcs?
    A: No, but, he tries to switch the subject.

    “Orcs never come near the inn.” The man replies. “Not even near Cameth Bryn, or the old castle. If you’ve been near the place.”

    So this is my interpretation of finding out who the adventurers are, but risk being exposed. I’ll have Camthalion roll Perception to see if he understands the question was off.
    I’ll give him a +20 bonus for Easy difficulty, (switching the subject, stranger to Camthalion).
    Perception: 89+35+20= 144: Success.

    Camthalion senses something is off about this stranger. He may be a master of disguise, but elves are not easily fooled. His arrow slips back on the bow.

    Q: Does Ar Gular try to diplomatically evade conflict (Unlikely)
    A: No

    “Lat kramp nar srinkhsha amirz lat nurzum” the stranger shouts as he poises himself for combat.

    Distance: 10d10′: 66

    encounter

    Round 1:
    Camthalion moves 10′ closer and shoots at Ar Gular: 57+48+10= 115: 15C: 78: Strike to lower leg. Tendons torn. +3 hits. -25 to activity. Stunned 1 round.
    Ar Gular: Stunned

    Camthalion releases his arrow, which hits the stranger on his lower leg. He drops down, interrupting his spell, and he starts stumbling to walk to some sort of cover.

    Round 2:
    Camthalion reloads, moves 10′ closer and shoots at Ar Gular: 77+48+10+5-35=105: 11C: 2: Glancing blow. No extra damage.
    Q: Does Ar Gular try an offensive spell? (Instead of defensive)
    A: Yes
    Ar Gular: List: Fire Law: Fire Bolt: 68+90-30-25-25=78: 12B: 34-10=24: Minor burns. +8 hits. 1 hit per round.

    Camthalion shoots another arrow into the stranger utters some unknown words and a small flaming ball appears between his fingers. He throws a curveball towards Camthalion and a bolt of fire strikes the elf. He gets burned, and the burning continues.

    Round 3:
    Camthalion reloads, moves 10′ closer and shoots at Ar Gular: 27+48+10-35-20=30:-
    Q: Does Ar Gular try an offensive spell? (Instead of defensive)
    A: False Presupposition. Ar Gular won’t cast a spell but draw his dagger and attack. Perhaps he’s afraid his spells may draw unwanted attention.
    Ar Gular: Moves 40′ Closer.

    Unwaivering to darkness, the elf warrior closes in and fires another arrow, but misses this time.
    The stranger draws a dagger and with a hurt leg almost covers the distance between them.

    Round 4:
    Camthalion reloads and shoots: 92+48+10-35-20=95: 8A: 91-20=71: Strike to lower leg. Tendons torn. +3 hits. -25 to activity. Stunned 1 round.
    Ar Gular: Stunned
    Q: Is Ar Gular prone (both legs tendons torn) (Likely)
    A: No

    His face a few feet away, Camthalion aims for his opponent’s other leg, and hits. The minstrel screams and stumbles once more. Stunned he stays on the spot.

    Round 5:
    Camthalion draws his sword and attacks in melee: 62+23+5-20-5-30=35:-
    Ar Gular attacks with his dagger: 52+45-15-50-25=7:-

    Round 6:
    Camthalion attacks in melee: 73+23+5-20-5=76: 7 hits
    Ar Gular attacks with his dagger: 19+45-15-50-25=-26:-

    Round 6:
    Camthalion attacks in melee: 24+23+5-20-5=27: –
    Ar Gular attacks with his dagger: 93+45-15-50-25=48:-

    Round 7:
    Camthalion attacks in melee: 54+23+5-20-5=57: –
    Ar Gular attacks with his dagger: 92+45-15-50-25=47:-

    For almost a minute, the two opponents are locked into melee. Their wounds prevent them from scoring a successful hit.

    Round 8:
    Camthalion surface way: Heal: 64-30=34: Success: Heals: 9 hit points
    Ar Gular attacks with his dagger: 85+45-15-50-25=40:-

    Feeling close to losing his consciousness, Camthalion focuses inwards and casts a healing spell. He recovers as his enemy lashes with his dagger, and manages to evade the hit.

    Round 9:
    Camthalion attacks in melee: 32+23+5-20-5=35: –
    Ar Gular attacks with his dagger: 17+45-15-50-25=-28:-

    Another series of unsuccessful melee. The two opponents realize they must change tactics.

    Round 10:
    Camthalion attacks in melee: 03: Fumble: 45: Drop your weapon. It will take 1 round to draw a new one or 2 rounds to recover old one.
    Q: Does Ar Gular try an offensive spell? (Instead of melee)
    A: Yes
    Ar Gular: List: Water Law: Water Bolt: 8: Fumble: 88: Internalization overloads senses. +20 hits. Blind and deaf for 10 minutes. +1 CP.

    Keeping on the same tactic, hoping for a miracle, as his strength saps away from the burning spell, Camthalion fumbles and drops his sword.
    His opponent’s eyes gleam with the advantage he’s found. He screams in an unknown language and as he gestures ready to cast a spell, his eyes turn black, and blood oozes from his ears. He must have done something wrong in his incantations, and he walks around aimlessly unable to see or hear.
    Camthalion lifts up his sword, and carves his enemy in one swift movement.
    Then he pauses, and bandages his burns.

    Camthalion recovers (1d4-1 normal arrows and 1d2-1 magic arrows): 2 normal and 1 magical arrow.
    Camthalion searches his opponent’s belongings. An evil mage could have valuable information.
    23sp, 1gp, 2gems(9 carat amber, 5 carat quartz), 3written works(1: carved wood, local region, rigged condition, philosophical treatise, 2: parchment and ink, local region, good condition, map, spell descriptions, journal, mystic tome of valor, historical text, letter, 3: vellum and ink, local region, fair condition, law/decree/charter/pardon),1artifact(ring, shock bolt I twice a day)

    I've used both Harnmaster and MERP to generate the most appropriate items.

    Camthalion goes through the minstrel’s belongings. Nothing in there points to a wandering minstrel. Instead, he finds silver, gold, gems and written works of several types. The most important of which, a book with a map of the region, spell descriptions, and other interesting things that will take a while to uncover. He also finds a ring that has some engravings on it, and takes it too.

    Now Camthalion needs to decide what to do with his enemy’s corpse. He’s altruistic, good, calm and content. I decide he’ll bring him back to the inn, along with the findings.

    Camthalion, wounded and battered, returns to the Last Inn, dragging Turlin’s lifeless body with him. As he arrives, the Grumms surround him.

    Q: Do the Grumm’s recognize Turlin?
    A: Yes

    “That’s Turlin, the trobadour! What happened to him?” Rubb asks, scared. “Did orcs get to him? what evil has befallen us?”
    “He, he is the evil. He posed as a bard, but he’s an agent of darkness. He cast fire, by chanting spells in the Black Speech. I barely survived.”

    Influence: 45+20=65: Failure.
    Q: Do they believe Camthalion?
    A: Yes, but they’re shocked.

    “It… it can’t be.” He looks at Camthalion’s burn wounds. “He was spying at us all this time. You saved us from great evil. I sincerely hope your friend arrives soon with help. I doubt this place is as safe any more. We’ll start locking the doors at nights. We’ll do our best.” He turns to his wife. “Come, help me bury him at the back, before we scare our customers.”

    Regarding Thuk, the orc captain, the only possible threat remaining, the following scenarios are considered plausible:

    • He disappeared fearing his masters wrath
    • He is on a mission elsewhere
    • He is dead
    • He is recruiting more orcs to go after the adventurers

    Considering the story and Oracle sofar I believe the last scenario to be the least plausible. Therefore, with the safe haven of the Last Inn in mind, I will switch to a single Oracle roll for the remaining time period until Leowyn returns, and only reconsider if deemed so.

    Q: Does anything unexpected happen until Leowyn’s return?
    A: Yes, and. Intervention. Regress Plot.
    Q: Is it Thuk? (Unlikely)
    A: Yes
    Q: Is it a night attack? (Likely)
    A: False Presupposition. It’s not an attack.
    Q: Is it a sighting/tracks?
    A: Yes, and the orcs have a warband.
    When: Day 23, 1st Watch, 1.15am.
    Q: Does Camthalion see them? (Instead of news being delivered)
    A: Yes.
    Q: Is it tracks?
    A: No, it’s sighting.

    Seems Camthalion is worried by the enemy movements, and he patrols at nights.

    Orc Perception: 53+20-40=33: Failure. Camthalion isn’t detected.

    After recovery, Camthalion soon took patrol duties day and night near the inn. The first days pass uneventful, but one night, five days later, he makes out the crouched figures of several orcs under the starlit sky. He hides, and motionless, they pass by him.
    The Trollshaws are far from safe. Orcs coming closer and closer to the civilized lands.
    At morning, he tries to follow their tracks, see where they come from and where they went.

    Perception: 28+35=63: Failure.

    He follows the tracks for a while, but can’t make sense of them, unless he strays too far, and can’t risk abandoning the patrol of the inn, so he returns.

    Q: Does anything unexpected happen until Leowyn’s return?
    A: Yes, but, nothing dangerous.
    When: Day 24, noon.
    Q: Is it a rare book trader?
    A: No, but it’s a trader.
    I don’t think we’re interested right now in any purchases so I’ll let this event slide.
    I wanted to see if I could make the event interesting by having a possible buyer for the rare tomes found in Herubar Gular.

    The rest of the days pass without any further sign of orcs. Traders come and go. As the tenth day arrives, a caravan enters the inn yard. Leowyn dismounts from her horse and removes her helmet. She has arrived finally.
    The caravan seems battered. Leowyn and Camthalion greet each other.
    “I’ve brought a healer. How’s Dwalin?” She asks.

    Q: Does Dwalin show signs of improvement?
    A: No, but, only very slight.

    “He’s about at the same condition as you left him. How was your trip?” He asks.
    “First things first. Let’s get him to shape, then we can exchange news.” She responds. “Suse!” She calls to the healer. “Let’s get you to my friend”
    They go upstairs to Dwalin’s room.

    Q: Can Suse heal Dwalin with a spell?
    A: Yes

    Suse: Major Nerve Repair: 80+18+20+30= 148: -55 to RR: 46-55: -9The healer lays her hands by Dwalin’s side, and grabs his forehead. She spreads a paste over him and meditates. Dwalin starts shaking all over, Camthalion and Leowyn hold him down. Then after a while, he stops shaking and Suse removes her hands.
    Exhausted, she sits down. “I’ll need a moment.”
    When finally she stands up, Dwalin slowly gets on his feet.
    “Vrt prend?” He mumbles. “What happened?” He repeats.
    Leowyn smiles. “The healing lady here saved your skin. I believe you owe her a heft sum of gold.”
    “Two dozen of them coins it will be, and I’ve cut you one whole gold because the shield maiden here saved us on the road.” The healer adds.
    Dwalin’s eyes widen out. The dwarf might have just recovered from his condition, but the cost was enough to shake him.
    “As promised, we can trade with you for the tomes.” Let me get them to you.

    Tomes value: 42gp in a major city.
    Q: Do they agree on getting all the tomes in exchange for the services?
    A: No, but, they agree with 3 more gp, which the party provides.
    Q: Does Wyny make an offer against the bandits? (Likely)
    A: Yes.

    Suse pockets the tomes, which she gets at half market value, and an extra 3 gold pieces. Dwalin wants to grumble, but he’s grateful to be back in fighting condition.
    “Now tell me, what happened while you were gone?” Camthalion asks as they go downstairs.
    “I’ll tell you what happened!” The caravan master snaps. “Highwaymen jumped us on the bridge! They got away with one cart worth of goods.”
    The party looks at each other.
    “You all look like you can take care of yourselves. How does 1 gold to each of you sound…to take back what is mine?” He proposes.
    Before they could even discuss it, Dwalin moves forward. “Yes. Make it 4 gold for all of us.”
    “Are you sure you’re up to it master dwarf?” Camthalion asks.
    “But yes! I’ve been healed and taken care of like a baby!” Dwalin responds.

    Q: Does Wyny agree? (Likely)
    A: No

    “3 gold is all I can offer. Take it or leave it.” The caravan master counters.
    “Let’s do it! I want to get these feet moving.” Dwalin agrees.
    “Then do it fast. I don’t know how long it will take for these lowlifes to escape with my goods. The rain is gonna cover their tracks.” Wyny adds. “We’ll spend the night here and set off to Tharbad in the morning.”
    “We did not agree to that!” Camthalion points out to the party. “There is danger that we must deal with. We haven’t caught up yet.”
    “I’m already one foot in. I’m to escort them to Tharbad. Had to give them something so that they would come here.” Leowyn replies. “It’s very close. You can fill us in on the way.”

    Q: Does Enryn join them?
    A: False Presupposition. This was never on the table.

    So the party gathers their adventuring gear, and head out towards the bridge.

    Bookkeeping

    Arrows: Camthalion is at 35+3 arrows,
    Leowyn is at 35 arrows

    Criticals Received EP
    Camthalion 200
    Kill Points EP
    Camthalion 600

    Since Camthalion scored the criticals AND kill there's no reason to calculate them as criticals EP deduct from kill EP, for a same sum total.

    Hits Received EP
    Camthalion 29
    Spell Points EP
    Camthalion 100
    Non-Idea EP Total EP
    Camthalion 929

    I’ll give Camthalion half the total as idea points. 464 EP total.

    Summing up, from previous session.

    Name Experience Points
    Camthalion 5106 EP
    Dwalin 5666 EP
    Leowyn 4891 EP

    Money: The party pool is 6sp, 87bp, 6cp and 59tp.

    Hit Points: Dwalin is at full hit points, Leowyn is at full hit points, Camthalion is at full hit points.

    Additional Gear Weapons Valuables Herbs
    Camthalion Broadsword +5, Javelin +5 2 gems, 3 written works, 1 magic ring Rewk, Tharl, Attanar, Suranie
    Dwalin Battle Axe +10, Light
    Leowyn Morningstar +5

    Session Summary

    It’s always exciting to see how the Oracle and random rolls create their own story, and I’m always happier when that story somehow makes sense. I love how Ar Gular, bereft of minions, tried to deal with the adventurers on his own, and failed.
    It was a very risky combat. I knew about the swinginess of MERP, but I didn’t know about the dark magic part. I thought that Corruption Points was all it was about, but the Spellcasting Fumbles are up to par with WHFRP, with an Unmodified Fumble roll of 01-10, that’s 10% of all directed spells! And, that’s what saved Camthalion from certain death.
    Again, it’s becoming harder and harder to run MERP, as I discover a lot of spots where I have to houserule or ask the Oracle. This is an issue, especially considering it’s a d100 crunchy system, where expectations are a bit higher.
    Now the orc warband could have been Thuk (as the Oracle said) but maybe he’s going his own way, who knows.
    I believe right now I have enough of a backstory to introduce a Background Events Secret Oracle.
    Since the Trollshaws main thread is coming to an end (even though I don’t use threads directly), I will keep an open eye to conversions.
    Overall I really enjoy how the campaign evolves. I have three unfullfilled character backstories, a thread about the bridge bandits, and an escort mission to Tharbad.

     
  • giorgis 4:57 pm on May 21, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: ,   

    In the Trollshaws. Ep10 

    Day 21, Hithui, 4th Watch

    The weather (4) is hot, foggy, clear skies, and the wind is SE calm
    Encounter check: 6: No encounter
    Leowyn recovers 1 hit point

    5th Watch:
    The weather (4) is warm, foggy, clear skies, and the wind is SE calm
    Encounter check: 10: No encounter
    Leowyn recovers 4 hit points

    6th Watch:
    The weather (4) is warm, clear skies, and the wind is SE breeze
    Encounter check: 8: No encounter
    Leowyn recovers 4 hit points

    After the fight, and getting back into shape, the caravan moves on through the warm and foggy weather. As night falls, the caravan camps at the foothills of the Weather Hills.

    Day 22, Hithui, 1st Watch

    The weather (4) is warm, clear skies, and the wind is SE breeze
    Encounter check: 10: No encounter
    Leowyn recovers 4 hit points

    2nd Watch:
    The weather (4) is warm, clear skies, and the wind is SE breeze
    Encounter check: 3: No encounter
    Leowyn is at full hit points

    3rd Watch:
    The weather (3) is warm, clear skies, and the wind is NE windy
    Encounter check: 10: No encounter

    4th Watch:
    The weather (3) is warm, foggy, clear skies, and the wind is NE calm
    Encounter check: 18: Encounter
    Since we’re right at the end of the border of the disputed region, I will ask the Oracle.
    Q: Is the region Lawless?
    A: Yes
    Lawless/Day: 22: Reroll as Wilderness/Rural: Rural: 22: Farmer/etc: 39: Half–Villein/Average Thrall: 37: At Work (Making/Selling Goods)
    Attitude: 58: Indifferent

    5th Watch:
    The weather (3) is cold, clear skies, and the wind is NE windy
    Encounter check: 3: No encounter

    6th Watch:
    The weather (5) is warm, cloudy skies, and the wind is S breeze, thunderstorms: 3: hail
    Encounter check: 10: No encounter

    The night goes by uneventfully, and the caravan continues on their way. They pass by some farmers collecting their autumn fruits from an orchard. They don’t pay attention to them, and go each on their own way. The warm weather switches to a cold NE wind by night, and nightfall catches them in the open plains, past the Weather Hills, towards the East. Severe hail and thunderstorms catch them unaware and they have to cover the goods and sleep under the carts.

    Day 23, Hithui, 1st Watch

    The weather (5) is warm, cloudy skies, and the wind is S calm, thunderstorms: 9: hail
    Encounter check: 10: No encounter

    2nd Watch:
    The weather (5) is warm, cloudy skies, and the wind is S windy, thunderstorms: 68: no hail
    Encounter check: 9: No encounter

    3rd Watch:
    The weather (6) is warm, overcast skies, and the wind is SW windy, rain showers
    Encounter check: 16: No encounter

    4th Watch:
    The weather (6) is warm, overcast skies, and the wind is SW breeze, rain showers
    Encounter check: 8: No encounter

    5th Watch:
    The weather (8) is cold, overcast skies, and the wind is SW windy, steady rain
    Encounter check: 8: No encounter

    6th Watch:
    The weather (8) is cold, overcast skies, and the wind is SW gale, steady rain
    Encounter check: 16: No encounter

    Hail and thunderstorms take up most of the night, but as day breaks, the rain switches to showers. The day moves on without anything of importance, and the night catches them further east, the weather becoming cooler, and steady rain, soaking them for good.

    Day 24, Hithui, 1st Watch

    The weather (8) is cold, overcast skies, and the wind is SW breeze, steady rain
    Encounter check: 16: No encounter

    2nd Watch:
    The weather (8) is cold, overcast skies, and the wind is SW windy, steady rain
    Encounter check: 3: No encounter

    3rd Watch:
    The weather (8) is cold, overcast skies, and the wind is SW gale, steady rain
    Encounter check: 7: No encounter

    4th Watch:
    The weather (7) is cold, overcast skies, and the wind is NW windy, steady rain
    Encounter check: 10: No encounter

    5th Watch:
    The weather (6) is warm, overcast skies, and the wind is SW breeze, rain showers
    Encounter check: 15: No encounter

    6th Watch:
    The weather (6) is warm, overcast skies, and the wind is SW calm, rain showers
    Encounter check: 7: No encounter

    The night is cold and rainy. The rain continues through the entire day, dropping the morale of the caravan as they head eastwards, even closer to the Last Bridge. They welcome the switch to a warmer south west wind and lighter rain.

    Day 25, Hithui, 1st Watch

    The weather (7) is cold, overcast skies, and the wind is NW windy, steady rain
    Encounter check: 2: No encounter

    2nd Watch:
    The weather (7) is cold, overcast skies, and the wind is NW windy, steady rain
    Encounter check: 6: No encounter

    3rd Watch:
    The weather (7) is cold, overcast skies, and the wind is NW windy, steady rain
    Encounter check: 18: Encounter: (10:18 AM): Lawless/Day: 85: Brigands/Highwayman: 53: Offering employment
    Attitude: 54: Alarmed
    Alright, some quick calculations tell me that this encounter happens right at the Last Bridge, in visible distance from the Last Inn.
    Bandits offering employment can be either taken literally (bandits could be sellswords) or they could “offer protection” in a general sense or as a toll to the bridge. I’m leaning towards the latter rather than the former, but sometimes it all depends on the balance of the forces. At the very least it seems that a fight could possibly be avoided.
    Let’s start by asking some questions to the Oracle.

    Q: Are there many bandits?
    A: Yes, and, they’re well armed. Intervention: Entity Negative: (Leowyn/Enryn/Caravan/Bandits): Caravan. Okay it’s pretty obvious that the situation isn’t advantageous to the caravan. Maybe as they were going through the bridge, they got ambushed and surrounded.
    Bandits: 1d6, twice, pick highest: 6 bandits.
    Q: Did the bandits surround the caravan?
    A: No
    Q: Did a wheel break off a cart?
    A: Yes, and it happened due to a covered loose stone on the bridge, probably done this way by the bandits.
    Q: Do the bandits “offer protection”?
    A: No
    Q: Do the bandits demand to fix the cart for a tribute? (Likely)
    A: False Presupposition. The bandits will ruin the cart completely.

    After another cold rainy night, sapping their strength, the caravan is almost at the Last Inn, but as it goes through the Last Bridge, one of the cart wheels falls into a hole that wasn’t visible. The sheer weight, cracks the wheel, and the cart gets stuck.
    At the same time, three cloaked figures from the west and three from the east side of the bridge appear, blocking any escape.
    They have short swords in their hands, and wear some sort of cured leather armor.
    A bearded man steps front and starts speaking, while the rest approach the caravan together.
    Unless Leowyn and Enryn begin a fight, they can’t stop them from advancing. And the odds seem against them.
    “Fellow travelers. What luck that you came our way. So many caravans are plagued by thieves and brigands. We will help you in your our of need, to fix your cart in a moment.” Before anyone has a chance to speak he turns to his men.
    “Boys! fix the axle!” And two men dash to the cart.
    Q: Does Enryn try to stop them?
    A: Yes
    Q: Does he use force?
    A: No

    Opposed MM roll: Enryn: 0170+18: -53: Fumble: 72: You Slip. 75% Chance of Falling: 86: No fall. Stunned 2 rounds. Bandit: 55+5=60: 80.

    Enryn tries to stop them, putting his horse in the way, but the slippery bridge from the downpour makes him lose control. By the time he has calmed his horse, the men have surrounded the axle.
    Leowyn shouts. “Halt. We will fix the axle.”

    Influence: 32: Failure

    With a grin on his face, the man responds. “But you can’t deny our help lady.”
    In a moment the men kick the other wheel, and the cart axle breaks, the cart hitting the ground.
    Enryn grabs his sword, but the men are pointing their blades to the crew.
    Tensions are high.
    “I believe you can’t leave your supplies unguarded in these dangerous roads, so we will guard them. Move on, and they will be safe.” The man adds.
    “That’s robbery!” Wyny says.
    “I call it services rendered.” The man responds.

    Q: Is the cart with Wyny and Suse the one broken?
    A: No
    Q: Does Wyny orders the guards to attack?
    A: No, and he feels threatened. Intervention. Entity Negative: (Leowyn/Enryn/Caravan/Bandits): Caravan.
    Q: Do the bandits take a prisoner?
    A: Yes: (Ambald/Eram/Sige): Ambald.

    “And we will keep this fine man with us, to make sure you don’t do anything stupid. We’ll release him in a few hours.” The man adds, as one of the bandits grabs a shaken Ambald.
    “Come on now, go on your way.” He adds.
    Grumbling Wyny orders the caravan to move on, towards the Last Inn, having lost a cart full of goods to the bandits.

    I need to stop the session here, because I need to know the condition of the rest of the party before I continue. So for the next episode I will be switching to Camthalion and the comatose Dwalin from Day 15 3rd Watch to Day 25th 3rd Watch. As far as bookkeeping is concerned Leowyn only gained 200 EP for the travel, reaching 4891 EP total.

    Session Summary

    Not much of a session this one. I know that random encounters are supposed to be meaningful encounters, but that concept goes with social ttrpgs in mind, where the story is a huge part of the overall experience as the GM fills in all the other details to make the world feel alive. In solo though, as I saw in the previous sessions the Open World concept is very important, and it comes alive by non meaningful, everyday encounters, just like the farmers collecting fruit.
    As to the bandits encounter it was a tough call. Essentially it came down to the caravan master and guard. If any of them would be aggressive towards the bandits, a fight would break out. Odds were against us though, even worse than in the previous bandit ambush. Since the caravan was near the Last Inn, it was in Leowyn’s best interest to not engage, but she would actively support in case of a fight.

     
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